View Cart

What EXACTLY is the Credential Maintenance Program for LEED?

The CMP is a way to keep you updated on the latest changes to LEED every 2 years. It consists of continuing education credits, and a fee.

If you go for the LEED Green Associate exam, you’ll be required to pay a maintenance fee of $50 every two years. You will also be required to do 15 hours of continuing education every two years, with 3 hours obtained from an approved program specific to LEED updates.

If you’re attempting the LEED AP Specialty Exam, you’ll be required to pay a maintenance fee of $50 every two years. You will also be required to do 30 hours of continuing education every two years, with 6 hours obtained from an approved program specific to LEED updates.

If you have Multiple LEED Specialties, for example you are a LEED O+M and ID+C, you will be required to pay the $50 maintenance fee every two years, plus the same hourly requirements as above for the LEED AP Specialty (30 hours, 6 LEED-specific) + 6 LEED-specific hours for each Specialty you have after the first one. So if you are a LEED O+M & ID+C, you will be required 36 hours, 12 of which are LEED-Specific.

If you’re already a LEED AP from a previous version of the LEED exam (NCv2.2, CIv2.0, etc.), you will be required to pay a $50.00 maintenance fee every two years. However, you don’t have to start paying until June 2011. So essentially, your first round of CMP is free. Along with the fee, you’ll be required to do 30 hours of continuing education every two years, with 6 hours obtained from an approved program specific to the LEED Rating System, credit categories and LEED updates.

You will be able to report these hours online (at > My Credentials) starting in November of 2009 – and it’s strictly based on the honor system. However, an unknown certain percentage of LEED professionals will be audited, so it’s vital that you remain truthful and honest and have the paperwork to back up the hours you input.

So what counts for Continuing Education (CE) hours?

There are a variety of activities that you can take to earn your hours (which again you must report every two years). They include:

  • Live Presentations
  • Self-Study Programs
  • College and University Courses
  • Certificates, Professional Licenses and Credentials
  • Committee and Volunteer Work
  • Authorship
  • and LEED project participation

Please note that the GBCI will not award CE hours for activities intended as preparation for any exam!

Now, there are specific requirements regarding each of these activities, which is already neatly outlined for you in The Credentialing Maintenance Program Guide, which can be found on the CMP portion of the GBCI website here.

FAQs about your LEED credential:

Green Associate Exam

LEED AP Specialty Exam

Back to main FAQ page

Click here for the best Study Guides & Practice Exams

14 Comments On This Post

  1. Pat,
    Great Website! I passed the LEED NC v2.2 on June 30th and your website played a significant role in my success!! Thanks a Million!

    Now the Million Dollar question: many have passed the “Legacy” LEED AP after putting in a lot of hardwork, taking time off from work, family responsibilities, etc. Now the USGBC says we have to go through a whole bunch of crap “again”?? I am now more and more convinced that USGBC ir running a “SCAM” agency…purely to suck money out of people to fill their coffers!

    a Frustrated LEED(Legacy) AP

  2. I must mention that the moment I get a doubt about anything related to LEED I just jump to ur website.
    And yeah, all my queries get solved…
    I passed on the 29th June & am very glad to see the change on this website & glad to see a picture of you 🙂
    Keep up the good work.
    Thanks again.

  3. I could reach the exact matter I wanted on this website within few seconds. Good organised website.

  4. This is much more clear than the email leed sent out, I still don’t understand it. I think they might be going nuts over there at GBCI?

  5. Pat, thank you for the great website! Through a combination of your site and the USGBC study guide, I passed on June 30th. Thank you for your well organized study tips.

    I, however, like the others posting here, am frustrated and confused. I was under the impression from the USGBC email that if I acquired my certified AP accreditation from v2.2 or earlier, I could opt to do nothing. The confusion comes from whether or not I must sign up and take more exams, etc. And do we HAVE to fulfill CE credits? I dont mind, I would just the prefer the veil come off and a simpler explanation could get out there. And Pat, I know you’re the guy for the job!

    Thanks again-


  6. I just called USGBC b/c their email was confusing. I found out I can A) do nothing and remain LEED AP or B) opt in for free (now) and become LEED AP+ on the date they send me an email allowing me to opt in (I assume that would be sometime this fall). Then 2 years from the date I get the email allowing me to opt in I will have to either A) re-test in my specialty (I will not do this option) or B)have completed 30 credit hours of CEU’s in my specialty. Then every 2 years I will have to continue to get 30 credit hours of CEU’s and pay a $50 maintenance fee. This is truly a ponzi scheme of the highest order.

    I asked them what happens if right now I choose the do nothing option and then 3 years from now I want to be LEED AP+. She said at that time it would be as if I never had a LEED credential at all and would have to meet all the requirements for anyone taking the new exam and I would have to re-test.

    I also asked what happens if I choose to upgrade now and become LEEDAP+ and then 3 years from now I decide it is a waste of time and money and I wish I have never upgraded. She said I could always opt out and then I would just go back to being LEED AP.

    It sounds like the smart money is on upgrading to LEED AP+ via additional classes for now.

  7. Pat:

    Thanks for the update. I used your material and passed LEED in June 2009.
    As far as USGBC is concened, I’m not willing to give them the authority to monitor and bill me every 2 years. I intend to stay just a LEED AP forever.

    I believe USGBC places more value on current certification than does their audience. I’ve personally observed that many potential clients don’t feel the value of a LEED building rating is worth the expense. They will build to conform to the standards, but aren’t willing to pay USGBC for the rating.

  8. USGBC should wake up and realize that no hiring agency now a days care about considering you as LEED AP, NC, specially in this gloomy economy. After becoming LEED AP I never increased my chance to be considered more selectable potential candidate.I rather found that beeing more proficient in eQUEST/DOE2 is more important than LEED, AP in order to know about energy simulation model. I am not convinced to spend more time, money and bear frustration for possessing a LEED certification.
    LEED AP NC Architect

  9. Pat,
    Could you confirm that I am understanding the Legacy LEED AP maintenance correctly? The fee is waived until 2011, but the continuing education units are not waived until then. Even if we passed the LEED exam before version 3.0 was put into place, we must take maintenance courses starting now and earn 30 hours of continuing education (with 6 hours specific to the LEED Rating, etc.) before 2011. Or is the fee waived AND the requirement for continuing education units waived until 2011?

  10. I am a LEED AP and a P.E. – Can the Contiuning Education Courses I use for my PE count towards the Legacy LEED AP Maintenace and Vice Versa. Otherwise I am going to be up to my neck in C.E. Courses for LEED AP and PE which is not right.

  11. I’m also concerned about the CMP for legacy LEED APs. I can pay the $50 every 2yrs. It’s the costs of some courses approved for fufilling the required 6 LEED ceu’s + courses needed for the other 24 ceu’s. Some are free, and some are not, and the latter can add up over 2yrs. Thanks for your website, Pat.

  12. I was planning to take leed Green associate courses to get prepared for the exam and while reading the Candidate handbook, I did not understand this phrase, under Eligibility Requirements section ” Five to seven percent of all applications will be audited; you will be notified immediately if you are chosen for an audit and will be notified of your eligibility within seven days.”

    What if I am not one of the 5-7 percent? What I am suppose to do then?

    • Amgad,

      Auditing is their way of taking a Random Sample of people and seeing if they’ve met the eligibility requirements.

      If you’re not a part of that 5-7%, then you have nothing to worry about, and you’ll be approved and be able to register for an exam date and take the test.

      There’s no way of knowing if you’ll be in that 5-7&, so it’s best to do everything you need to do (all eligibility requirements, etc.), just in case.

      They can’t possibly look at every single person’s application, which is why it’s a random 5-7% audit.

      Hope that helps!


  13. One of the options for those of us who are LEED AP from a previous exam is “do nothing.” What happens if someone chooses this option? I hope you have time (anyone) to respond to this as I keep getting asked this question.


Leave a Comment

Please refrain from posting any exam questions that are from the actual LEED exam or other sample exams. This jeopardizes the existence of the open comment format. Such comments will be deleted. Thank you for your understanding.


Study Guides

My recommendations for the most helpful study guides and audio books that you can find for every LEED rating system.
Click for more info....

Study Guides

Practice Exams

There are tons of practice exams available to help you study for your LEED exam. Here are the BEST practice exams you can find that I’ve personally used and recommend to anyone.
Click for more info....

Practice Exams

Continuing Education (CE) Units

This 30 hour package includes everything you need to meet the GBCI Credential Maintenance requirements for LEED APs with Specialty.

Continuing Education (CE) Units


Find out where LEED exam prep classes are being held in your local area. Training courses will help you get through the exam process quickly and easily.
Click for more info....


About Me

About Me

Hi! My name is Pat and I’m the guy behind I graduated with a B.A. in Architecture from the University of California Berkeley, and was working in an Architecture firm for the last few years in Southern California...


Get the Newsletter

To get FREE updates and information about LEED v3, please enter your name and email below. I will never give away, trade or sell your email address. I HATE SPAM, and you can unsubscribe at anytime.

Your website has been a great help and I thank you for putting a great resource tool for everyone to follow.


Read more Testimonials »