Gallery: INTERVIEW: ECOBroker John Beldock on Green Real Estate


Green homes are on the rise, but a world dominated by green real estate is far from reality. In this interview with ECOBroker John Beldock, we thought we’d take a look at ways to locate green homes that have already been built. We’ve covered lots of strategies that go into sustainable home design and construction, but how can you find a green home in your area? And how can we raise the demand for these properties?

Eastern Sierra House in Carson City, Nevada

John Beldock, CEO of EcoBroker, is working on this challenge one real estate broker at a time. EcoBroker educates real estate brokers on the ins and outs of green building, in hope that they can get more clients into green homes. Knowledge is the entire battle here – it’s a simple equation: the more EcoBrokers know, the better suited they are to buy and sell green properties. And the EcoBroker curriculum is robust, covering a wide range of principles and the major programs around the country—notably Built Green, ENERGY STAR Homes, LEED, and EarthCraft House, among others.

And even if you’re not a future EcoBroker, rest assured that Beldock and his team are working hard to raise the green IQ of our collective real estate force.

Beldock’s goal is to increase the knowledge base and confidence level among the real estate community, as well as to enrich the connection between the end consumer and their home. Brokers that complete the curriculum can brand themselves as “EcoBrokers,” thus differentiating themselves and drawing green-minded home buyers and sellers. Even as EcoBroker brings new broker recruits to the program, the curriculum is under constant development in order to keep pace with the industry. Green financing, for instance, continues to be an ever-evolving focus.

Inhabitat: Why did you start the EcoBroker?

Beldock:As real estate professionals and green building scientists, we saw a significant disconnect between the real estate and green industries. We built EcoBroker’s training curriculum, support structure, and communication platforms to bridge the gap between real estate professionals and the green market.

Inhabitat: How did the concept catch on and grow?

Beldock:From the start, we’ve put a tremendous priority on the quality of the EcoBroker, training curriculum for real estate professionals and the customer service we provide to our members and their clients. The development has required a tremendous amount of persistence, and it’s still not easy. Over the first three years, with over 600 members in 36 States and Canada, we’ve received a great deal of positive reinforcement that the bridge building, the training, and the EcoBroker platform have been truly valuable contributions to the market. We see meaningful progress in the direction of market transformation.

Ecobroker meeting with a solar consultant

Inhabitat: What have been your most challenging obstacles?

Beldock:Countless things compete for the limited time and attention of real estate professionals. We continue to develop innovative means of keeping our audiences interested and involved. Our learning curve in this regard has helped us create a great deal of institutional knowledge that has created additional benefits for our membership and beyond.

Inhabitat: Will EcoBroker ever expand to be THE clearinghouse for green properties? Some sort of national online searchable directory?

Beldock:We’ve been very deliberate about our searchable directory, and we see this area continuing to grow. Accurate representation is very important here, and a focus on proper representation will continue to set EcoBroker’s communication platforms apart. Our priority is that these platforms continue to provide value to our membership and their clients. It’s one thing to search, and another to find accurate information.

The news is good, though. You can now find a home with green features in many parts of the U.S. and internationally. The real estate industry is really catching on, and there’s tremendous enthusiasm and momentum, stemming from the availability of high quality green products and services.

Ecobroker conference

Inhabitat: What’s the most fun part about running EcoBroker?

Beldock:The market transformation feedback is the most entertaining part of EcoBroker’s educational and training structure. When EcoBrokers come back and report their experiences, when consumers give us positive feedback, and when the green industry provides that same positive feedback, we continuously get the reinforcement that EcoBroker is on the right track.

Inhabitat: Is EcoBroker a sustainable business?

Beldock:Absolutely. We expect EcoBroker to be around when our grandchildren are looking for properties or environmental training for real estate professionals. And EcoBroker has the best team of professionals I’ve ever assembled in any point in my pollution prevention career.

Eastern Sierra House in Carson City, Nevada

Inhabitat: Who are your heroes in green real estate or green building? And what can we learn from them?

Beldock: EcoBrokers are our new heroes. These are the real estate professionals making great progress in their communities. In the early years of the EcoBroker program, we’re seeing the most innovative and highest quality real estate professionals. These are the real estate professionals who recognize they have to innovate to stay on top, and to maintain the degree of quality and performance their clients have grown to expect. EcoBrokers are now part of the change agent force that green market transformation enthusiasts have been hoping to see grow for some time.

+ EcoBroker

About John Beldock:

Beldock built his first solar water heaters at the age of 14 and a series of solar homes in the 1980s. In the early ‘90s, he and his father developed and patented the first hypoallergenic DEET-free mosquito repellents for use in the US and in malaria-plagued developing countries. His entire career has been focused on energy efficiency and renewable energy education and applications. He has also been involved in the manufacturing of smart controllers for large and small plug loads.



Before starting EcoBroker, Beldock was the Director of the Environmental Analysis Program for the U.S. Department of Energy’s Office of Energy Efficiency and Renewable Energy. He has taught energy and environmental classes at the University of California, University of Maryland, and George Mason University.

The Solaire Green Apartment Complex in NYC


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  1. FacebookUser75 December 8, 2014 at 2:04 pm

    Totally agreed that promoting sustainable housing through the real estate market is key! was just launched less than two months ago with that in mind and it has more than 400 ACTIVE LISTINGS within the USA. It was founded, designed and launched by a LEED Green Associate and EcoBroker Realtor, who realized the needs of the market and how to best promote these unique kinds of properties and to get the general population interested. It’s also totally free, which has been a big issue for other sites that tried to have sustainable listings.

  2. Julie Kinnear September 15, 2011 at 8:02 am

    From the testimonials put forth on the Ecobroker website I gather that the courses are an advantageous investment for all real estate agents who need to differentiate. I have been promoting green real estate for at least 18 years now through my Toronto Real Estate Team. My experience is that especially nowadays, more and more customers are investing into solar energy not only because it is more efficient, but they also understand that upgrades like solar panels provide additional value to their property. With initiatives like Canadian ecoENERGY Home Retrofit Program, they can even reduce some of the initial costs. We also put an extra effort to promote
    the importance of solar energy on our website.

  3. listedgreen June 7, 2011 at 7:45 pm

    Just a quick note regarding any mention of existing, available online platforms, exclusive to green properties – with one in particular with a very important feature. is the only website of it’s kind to review green home features, before allowing it to post live on the ListedGreen site. This extra effort by the dedicated ListedGreen staff for over four years now, will maintain integrity for the Buyers search of truly green, energy efficient properties nationwide. Four years running.

  4. Inhabitat » GREEN... June 16, 2007 at 1:00 pm

    […] his office. So in large part, Green Key plays the role of facilitator. Bartle’s agents go through EcoBroker’s training and a local 2-day seminar to increase their knowledge of green strategies. Green Key […]

  5. Doug Malawsky January 26, 2007 at 12:23 pm

    Fascinating initiative. Our company, Horticultural Asset Managements, Inc., has created a product which is the Kelley Blue Book of trees, shrubs and installed landscaping. Our certified arborists go to the properties of homeowners and identify, inventory, measure and value the trees and shrubs on a property as well as create a care and maintenance guide for all of the inventoried trees and shrubs. We then generate a report which provides the homeowner with the replacement values for all of the green assets on their property, an inventory and care guide for each and every tree and shrub on the property and a plant health score with recommendations for follow up care on certain green assets. The purpose of the report or HMI assessment is to show home owners, sellers, buyers and realtors the value fo the green assets on the property – value seeking is a legitamite motive and if by educating homeowners that their property has green assets with dollar amount value we hope to see more owners, builders and realtors focus on this thus promoting the preservation of natural assets and promote landscape installation as an important part of determining a home’s value – all of this will hopefully lead to greener properties. We are bundling our HMI assessment with rights to receive highly discounted treatments for trees and shrubs which may be used to prep properties for sale as well as preserve the natural assets in the after sale. In conclusion, we feel if we can qauntify the curb appeal of green assets, realtors and builders will place greater importance on the preservation and/or installation of trees and shrubs on residential and commercial property. Our nationwide network of arborists allows us not only to provide the HMI assessment but to provide additional services to “tune up” the green assets thus creating a greater consumer awareness of the importance of doing so. We are working with nationally branded realtors and builders and hope to meet many Ecobrokers along the way. Thanks,

  6. emma amiad January 17, 2007 at 3:50 pm

    I am so thrilled to have earned the EcoBroker designation and can now be a part of a network of real estate professionals who care about “Green Built” homes and, hopfully, the environment. I am an exclusive buyer broker on Vashon Island in Washinton state ( and have felt like the only voice for “green” and sustainability for so long! 20 years ago I founded our local land trust as well as the local Audubon Society chapter and have offered my services, pro bono, to these non-profits. I also served for 10 years on our local park district board and working thorugh these three organizations i’ve helped preserve vital habitat here. I’ve also encouraged sustainable and eco minded buyers to buy older homes here and remodel, the best form of sustainable living, as well build “green”. I look forward to hearing from other brokers in my region (Seattle area) as well as builders and contractors who are interested in working on Vashon Island. The Ecobroker course work was challenging and I think it will lead to far more educated and professional level or real estate brokers. Great work!

  7. Manoj Kumar December 19, 2006 at 1:05 am

    We are one of the lartest manufacturer of solar water heaters and solar lighitng sytems in India, w are looking for off shore partners / distributors to sell our products , we are very keen in supply, and we have the full capability to deliver the goods. in the following range.
    Solar Water heaters – Flat plate collectors and Evaculated tube collectors.
    solar lanterns , solar Modules etc.

  8. Jennifer M. SPivey November 8, 2006 at 1:46 pm

    I am an Ecobroker certified real estate professional in Atlanta. My career prior to real estate was in the environmental / sustainable development field and it was really important for me to bring that knowledge with me and use it to help my clients. The Ecobroker certification has been a great investment! It has given me a way to stay current, but more importantly, it has created a growing network of “green” professionals in the Atlanta area.

    Thank you Mr. Beldock!

    Jennifer M. Spivey

  9. Quincy Vale October 26, 2006 at 8:02 pm

    As the former manager of both the Green Buildings and the Green Schools efforts in Massachusetts and now, as the leader of an integrated design-build residential green building company (using modular techniques by the way for speed, economies, and quality control), I have been active for years in trying to communicate the benefits of better, healthier and high performing buildings to the marketplace.

    The transactional professionals in the real estate space (agents, broker, appriasers, lawyers, mortgage brokers) etc.) are the necessary lubricant in the whole equation. But they can’t do their job unless they have the correct knowledge. Ecobrokers is the right answer at the right time.

    By way of advertisment, I am pleased to note that the forthcoming Building Energy 2007 conference (March 13-15 at Boston’s World Trade Center) will feature (among many other notable presenters), Mr. John Beldock, founder and CEO of Ecobrokers. I would encourage anyone and everyone with interest in green buildings and clean energy to attend. Please see for more information.


    – Quincy Vale

  10. dr. miguel stroe October 26, 2006 at 5:14 pm

    interested seeing pictures of the house being built in Missouri and learn more about wildcrete panels and applications, costs, etc.


  11. Jim Farley, Gen. Mgr. October 26, 2006 at 3:02 pm


    Thanks for the interesting article on John Beldock and EcoBroker. This sounds like we should be in touch with EcoBroker to introduce ourselves since from the gist of your article, they are in the process of identifying cos. like ours. Our co. is Wildcrete International LLC with developing divisions: Wildcrete Midwest, Branson, Mo.; Wildcrete Southeast, Ft. Lauderdale, Fl., Wildcrete Rocky Mountain, Hamilton, Montana and Wildcrete Mexico.

    We are a new co. seriously dedicated to sustainable living construction affordable to the woking class as well as designs for the upper end homeowner. We are constructing a prototype in Branson, Mo. area now. Though some other builders in the US are also utilizing the same specialty panels, we have developed our system with some new ideas and innovations. However, all the limited number of cos. involved in this building technology are producing excellent homes and commercial buildings. There are a number of photos of our project as well as another example set of photos from a friend in the business, exhibiting the strength of these buildings. Our friend, Ed Moore, 3-D Distributor in Cabo San Lucas, Mexico kindly allowed us to post those photos on our website.

    We are home based in Montana with developing divisions across the USA and Mexico. We are developing a specialty concrete for shotcrete and overlay applications. We are initiating manufacturing of bone shaped fiber concrete reinforcement. We are utilizing the best structural panels of steel mesh and EPS from the top two cos. in the world, 3D (Austrian) and M2 Emmedue (Italian) via their producers in the US and Mexico.

    The economic development authority folks from city and county level to the governor’s office here in Montana are enthused about our construction and eager to work with us in getting some of these homes and commercial buildings built in Montana. The response has been overwhelming causing a presently little co. like us to wonder how to respond to the staggering amount of interest. The EDA folks recognize the need, saying they will work with us on training grants to train other contractors in our Wildcrete construction system.

    Thanks for the opportunity to introduce ourselves to Inhabitat, along with John Beldock, if you would like to pass this along to him.

    Happy Green Trails,

    Jim Farley

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