Eco Friendly Homes
There’s a green movement in the world and home buyers are seeking out homes with eco friendly features like solar, electric vehicle charging stations, tankless water heaters, efficient appliances, heating and lighting.
As a homeowner, making your house “greener” is a solid investment in the future value of your home.
When it comes to investing in upgrades, savvy homeowners know that the return in investment down the line is an important consideration point. Today, there are many factors to think about when determining projects that will positively impact home value, which include a variety of green issues. In the real estate world, making green upgrades for a home often results in a significant increase in property value. With a focus on energy efficiency, homeowners can find ways to save money and make their homes easier to live in, as well as sell when they are ready.
How Green Upgrades Increase Home Value
Since greater efficiency is becoming easier and more affordable, making upgrades to a home that helps people get more for their money is a good overall investment. Any homeowner who ultimately plans to sell a home, even if it is years in the future, should keep an eye on the competition. Existing homes have a harder time competing against new construction because many new homes have a lot of green features added during the construction process. Giving buyers an updated home with efficiency for the sake of economy, convenience and social responsibility has a high association with a greater resale value. This Green Business Bureau Real Estate Agent Guide on how to sell an eco friendly home describes some of the features agents like to emphasize.
The Financial Benefits of Owning an Eco Friendly Home
There are several financial opportunities and benefits for homebuyers choosing a sustainable home:
- Lower utility bills – Energy and water-saving design and technology has allowed for significantly lower utility bills in green homes. In fact, sustainable homes can end up reducing monthly bills by up to 20%-30%. Also, these savings could be much higher in the future as resource scarcity worsens and energy and water costs increase.
- Higher resale value – More people are factoring environmental impacts into their purchasing decisions. The increasing demand for eco-friendly homes coupled with today’s limited (but growing) supply indicates that your clients will be able to sell their green home for much more than they paid for it.
- Lower maintenance costs – Designed to last for generations, truly sustainable homes are made from materials that tend to be much more durable than traditional building materials. This means less maintenance costs over time.
Eco Friendly Home Features
The biggest impact your home has on the environment and climate change is the energy it uses to power your home. That includes heating, air conditioning and your utilities. In most cases, this energy is powered by fossil fuel that emits carbon into the atmosphere. The goal is to either reduce the energy required or move to green energy sources.
Moving to green energy like solar is a great investment these days and in many states you can get a tax credit for installing it. Although the upfront cost is not trivial, home owners typically recoup all their investment within 5 to 10 years.
Home buyers in every age group either want to see or expect energy efficient appliances and systems with the Energy Star designation. Looking at the home holistically calls for attention to the structure as well as the equipment, in terms of insulation and other aspects that affect efficiency. Many buyers also want the benefit of high tech home automation like digital controls, timers, schedulers, etc. These digital systems may also provide greater information about the home’s consumption of resources, as well as the convenience of having tasks that can be completed with the touch of a screen.
Eco Friendly Home Renovations
Other common eco friendly renovations and upgrades that are desired include electric vehicle charging stations, tankless water heaters, composting systems, and HVAC systems that run on electricity and are powered by solar.
These features become twice as important when a home is also a home office and the main location for your work. Today’s remote work environment should be eco friendly as well. This Green Business Bureau Sustainability Guide for Home Offices is a great resource to understand what workers are looking for.
Upgrades that minimize the use of common resources like water are also preferred, especially in places that suffer periods of drought and water rationing. Home buyer preferences, supports the assessment that to sell a home, owners must look to overall efficiency.
Making Home Fit a Green Mentality
Home buyers understand that when they buy into a neighborhood, they must also buy into that neighborhood’s overall vibe. This means that homeowners and potential sellers should keep tabs on their neighborhood’s attitude and goals for the home experience. As green living becomes more of a lifestyle for people than a set of tasks to do on occasion, homeowners need to pay attention to the expectations set by the neighborhood for the home itself. This may include making improvements here and there to increase efficiency, or system-wide upgrades and retrofits that provide the height of resource and consumption control and awareness.
Saving money and having greater energy efficiency are two good reasons to consider green home improvements, but resale value is another important one. By making their homes green in various ways, homeowners can keep up with the neighborhood, ensure their home can compete on the real estate market, and provide a useful and efficient home for themselves.
Why Homeowners Are Going Green
In the end, the answer to this question is obvious. Investing into the home’s efficiency for energy, resources and even materials used to create structures has the potential to save homeowners money, time, and increase the overall value of their home. Opting for higher efficiency is simply something that people, including potential buyers will look to do by default. If you are going to compete with other sellers when putting your home on the market, it is critical that you have an energy efficient eco-friendly property!