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SustainAbility Newsletter

Homebuyers Willing to Pay More for a Green Home Now. But Why?

energy-efficient-homeAccording to McGraw-Hill Construction, the share of single-family home construction that are green has risen from 8% in 2008 to 17% in 2011. 

Clearly, the market for green homes is on the rise, but is it because individuals have started to care more about the environment?  Or is because the economy isn’t quite as bad as it was in 2007, and are individuals more willing to invest in environmental efforts once again as they did at the turn of the century?

Many homebuilders and developers are using "green" as a differentiator in marketing and sales campaigns, and eventually expect that green features will be the norm, rather than an optional feature.

The main two questions often asked are; who are these green buyers, and are these individuals more willing to pay more for a green home and/or green features.

To answer these questions, we must first understand and determine who exactly are this new "green buyers" that have emerged in recent years. Are these individuals who are interested in buying a green home to help the environment? Are these individual who have more income, and/or have landed more stable employment in recent years?

The answer may surprise you, because by and large the answer is "no".  The average green homebuyers are individuals who are willing to pay more upfront if there is a direct and quantifiable return on investment from an energy and/or water efficiency benefit, or from a health perspective. 

The results of a 2007 survey showed an overwhelming majority of owners (95%) indicated that they would be willing to pay more for a green home if it would help the environment, they would be paid back for their green investment, or they would get health benefits. However, 80% of those willing to pay more would do so only for cost savings and/or health benefits.

Clearly, for most green buyers, helping the environment was a bonus, but not a driving factor in spending additional money. The number of homebuyers who would buy a green home because it was the right thing to do or because it directly helped the environment was a rather small percentage. Focusing on cost savings and health benefits to market green homes and features, as opposed to focusing on their environmental attributes appears to be the best way for homebuilders to encourage individuals to purchase a new green home. 

In a more recent 2012 survey the results are even more surprising. The percentage of all homeowners willing to pay more for a "green home" explicitly for environmental reasons lowered from 17% in 2007, to 13% in 2012. However, the percentage of owners that would consider buying a "green home" actual rose during that same time period.

So what does that mean? It’s pretty obvious isn’t it? The average homebuyer is realizing the economical benefits of being environmentally responsible, and it is the economic benefits that are driving the green home market, and motivating the green homebuyer.  

So, homebuilders who wish to using "green" as a differentiator in their marketing and sales campaigns must realize that it’s not the “environment” per se that will drive sales for them. They must highlight what they are already doing that saves money and/or is good for buyers' health.  In selecting any green features to add to the current standard features and available options, homebuilders should focus on those that pay back any added cost in a reasonable time period.  

Keep in mind however that taking credit for helping the environment won’t hurt sales as long as it's clear that it's not going to cost the buyer additional money without any return in investment. In fact, if a homebuyer can save money and help the environment research shows that they are more willing to support those types of initiatives. 

 


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References and Sources used in this issue of SustainAbility Newsletter Include:

Audubon Lifestyles
www.audubonlifestyles.org 
             
The International Sustainability Council
www.thesustainabilitycouncil.org 

Sustainable Demonstration Project Blog
scotlandyardsgolf.blogspot.com

The 2012 Summer Olympic Games
www.olympic.org

Scotland Yards Golf Club
www.scotlandyards.com

Audubon Outdoors
www.audubonoutdoors.org

Love and Dodson
www.loveanddodson.com

Green World Parth
www.greenworldpath.com

Turf Feeding Systems
www.turffeeding.com

The Dodson Group
www.thedodsongrp.com      

To learn about sponsorship opportunities please call us at: 727-733-0762
This Issue of the SustainAbility Newsletter sponsored in part by:

The Dodson Group

SustainAbility Newsletter Archive Article (random)

Member Highlight: The Charlotte-Mecklenburg Housing Partnership

CMHP

The Charlotte-Mecklenburg Housing Partnership, Inc. (CMHP) is an ISC member and is a broad-based, private, nonprofit housing development and financial corporation organized to expand affordable and well-maintained housing within stable neighborhoods for low and moderate-income families in the City of Charlotte and Mecklenburg County with a continuing interest in the ability of occupants to more fully enter the economic mainstream.

The CMHP vision is to significantly expand the ability of the organization to create affordable housing and remain a community development force committed to continued collaboration with the private sector, along with neighborhood and government partners in promoting and developing economically integrated neighborhoods.

The CMHP was incorporated as a 501(c)(3) corporation in 1988 in response to the research and recommendation of a local citizens' forum. This group believed that there was a gap of housing affordability between families served by the public housing authority and those served by the market. After studying other housing partnerships and reviewing research funded by City of Charlotte, an Implementation Committee was established to develop local housing partnerships. The group's main focus was the relationship between private business (banking institutions) and government (the City and the County).

The ISC and Audubon Lifestyles are proud to have the Charlotte-Mecklenburg Housing Partnership as a program member and support.

To learn more about The CMHP visit: www.cmhp.org


PDF

 
CLICK HERE TO DOWNLOAD THE ENTIRE NEWSLETTER IN PDF FORMAT

 

References and Sources used in this issue of SustainAbility Newsletter Include:

Audubon Lifestyles
www.audubonlifestyles.com
 
The International Sustainability Council
www.thesustainabilitycouncil.org 

General Motors
www.gm.com

Toyota
www.toyota.com

Fisker Automotive
www.fiskerautomotive.com

Golfpreserves
www.golfcourseproject.com 

Charlotte-Mecklenburg Housing Partnership
www.cmhp.org

Chesapeake Bay Foundation
www.cbf.org 

University of Alaska Fairbanks
www.uaf.edu 

Taylor Properties Group
www.taylorpropertiesgrp.com  

Urbana University
www.urbana.edu 

The Golf Course Superintendents Association of America (GCSAA)
www.gcsaa.org 

American Society of Golf Course Architects
www.asgca.org

The United States Golf Association (USGA)
www.usga.org

$25 Annually $100 Annually $250 Reg / $100 Annually


SPONSORSHIP OPPORTUNITY

Sponsors are a critically important part to the success of ISC-Audubon. As a non-profit organization dedicated to advocating sustainability, we offer all of our programs to our members free of charge, and are publicly available for download on our website.

ISC-Audubon is proud to extend the opportunity to select businesses and organizations to become sponsors of our sustainability education and advocacy programs. As a sponsor, your business or organization can realize significant value.

Click here to learn more about this opportunity. 

 
 

A Coalition for Good - Spreading the Seeds of Sustainability

ISC-Audubon is a coalition of non-profit organizations and initiatives that include The International Sustainability Council (ISC), Audubon Lifestyles, Audubon Outdoors, Planit Green, Broadcast Audubon, and the Audubon Network for Sustainability. 

Funds generated through memberships and donations are used to provide fruit & vegetable seeds, wildflower seed mix, and wildlife feed & birdseed to urban and suburban communities around the world. These seeds are used by communities to establish fruit and vegetable gardens, bird and wildlife sanctuaries, and for the beautification of urban and suburban landscapes by creating flower and native plant gardens.

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