Homebuyers say energy efficiency is a top priority when searching for a home, according to a survey by The National Association of Home Builders. After surveying 3,000 recent and prospective homebuyers over the summer, NAHB identified Energy Star-rated features, an Energy Star rating for the whole house, and efficient lighting were the top preferred features. When provided with the option, the majority of buyers say they would choose sustainable options, such as passive solar design and durable materials. Buyers are also thinking long-term. The average buyer said they would pay as much as $9,292 upfront for energy-saving features in order to save $1,000 annually on utility costs.
Buyers are generally willing to spend more green certifications as well, including more than $2,000 upfront for a home certified to an above-code standard for health and wellness — features that have becoming increasingly important in the wake of COVID-19.
“We’re doing a lot more in our homes now,” observed Brandon Bryant, founder of Red Tree Builders, a green home building company in Asheville, N.C. “So in turn our homes needs to do a lot more for us.”
Examples of features that incorporate health and wellness include zone heating, purified air appliances such as UVC fans, indoor air quality sensors and a connection to the outdoors help residents live comfortably and safely in their homes. Buyers may not realize that many of these features are also inherently energy efficient, and meet a number of additional housing and lifestyle desires.