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Green Real Estate Data

by Jim Simcoe on February 11, 2011 · 7 comments


One of the keys to any successful real estate investor is knowing what your target market wants or at least what they are thinking about.  Green real estate is no different. With that said, here are a few of the latest green real estate statistics highlighting home buyers (and renters) purchasing decisions.

According to a survey done by ZIP Realty:

“- 55% of all home shoppers now cite green home features as an important part of their purchasing decision.
– The survey found that homebuyers who view green features as a priority ranked them important because:

– They helped save money (49%)

– They help the environment (40%)

– Occupant/family health (37%)

– Tax credit availability (12%)

– Increased resale value (15%)

– 89% of homebuyers rated energy efficiency the most important feature in a home.
– Less than 1% of homes on the market include “energy efficiency” in their description.”

According to a survey done by

– 60% of prospective renters search for properties that offer environmentally-friendly amenities.
– 17% of renters said they would not rent an apartment without environmentally friendly amenities.
– 57% of renters said their apartment community does not currently provide environmentally friendly amenities.

In a study done by American Lives published in Inman News:

“About 32 percent said they’d pay an extra $5,000 for energy-efficient features such as extra insulation, high-performance windows, efficient heating, cooling, lighting, appliances, etc., with the presumption that the homeowner would recoup the cost of those items over time.”

The key things to notice with these studies:

1. Green homes are becoming more sought after and more valuable.
2. There is a growing perception that ‘green’ and ‘energy-efficient’ are two different, opposing concepts.  I find this fascinating as I believe a home can’t be green without being energy-efficient.
3. The ‘health’ aspect is becoming a more important point of consideration for renters and buyers.  As public perception about the dangers of VOC’s, typical household chemicals increases, expect this number to continue to climb.

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{ 6 comments… read them below or add one }

MH February 11, 2011 at 3:26 pm

I wouldn’t say that “green” and “energy efficient” could ever truly be opposing concepts. But I can see how they fall into overlapping-but-distinct categories. If I had to guess I’d say that “green” has a hippie feel: it means recycled boxcars and solar panels and indoor atrium, etc. “Energy efficient” has a techier feel – super-sealed windows and fancy heating and cooling systems and appliances. They go together well, of course; I think their main difference is not in anything they do, but in the types of people to which they appeal.


Jim Simcoe February 14, 2011 at 8:33 am

Agreed. They mean similar things, but they do appeal to different people. I know many people who think ‘green’ is a silly term yet they use ‘energy efficient’ all the time. Thanks for the comment.


Tayo February 19, 2011 at 8:14 am

thanks man i totaly agree with you.


Jim Simcoe February 19, 2011 at 9:07 pm

You’re welcome, Tayo..

Greg February 14, 2011 at 10:09 am

The survey data is definately trending in favor of “greener” homes. But for investors, I think the more interesting study would be whether or not buyers are willing to pay a meaningful premium for it. “Green washing” a property is cheap and easy, but actually putting together a greener, more energy efficient property can be costly for investors. It’s not worth the investment if buyers won’t pay the difference. I would love to see someone do a study on the relative values of green properties….


Matt Stookey February 16, 2011 at 3:40 pm

Great post Jim!! Although I am surprised that “helping the environment” scored higher than “family health”. Obviously, you want to do your part for the environment, but family health is a little more important to me (but hey that’s just me haha). Anyways, it is great to see that “helped saved money” is ranked#1 because that is truly one of the most important benefits of a green home, (other than keeping it non-toxic and safer for your family) and it’s a benefit that a home buyer can quantify/understand.

So 90% of home buyers are saying that energy efficiency is the number 1 feature they look for in a home? That’s incredible….I guess I need to get back to work and start “greening” up more homes asap!!

Thanks Jim!!

Matt Stookey


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