Realtors: green home features increase value and marketability

Realtors: green home features increase value and marketability

Photo via iStock.

The demand for green homes is growing and today's consumers want homes and communities that are environmentally sustainable and resource efficient, according to The National Association of Realtors.

Realtors shared strategies for assessing and conveying the value green features bring to homes during the Real Property Valuation Forum at the 2015 REALTORS Conference & Expo.

During the forum, panelists focused on the importance of appraisers and listing and buyers agents not only educating themselves on the issues surrounding environmentally friendly and high-performance home features, but on how to market and emphasize those features to bring the greatest amount of interest and value to the home.

Panelists discussed NAR's Green MLS Implementation Guide, a comprehensive guide for helping multiple listing services promote the special features of a green home as well as NAR's Green MLS Tool Kit; MLSs across the country have adopted the tools' suggestions and guidelines. 

"Out of the 100 largest cities in the U.S., 79 have MLSs with green features included," said panelist Laura Reedy Stukel, a Realtor with L.W. Reedy Real Estate in Elmhurst, Illinois. "So the question now isn't 'what are the MLSs doing to include green features?' it's 'what are brokers doing to make sure that information is included?'" 

More and more home builders and homeowners are embracing environmentally friendly features, and with that in mind NAR's Green Designation is being updated to include classes that will focus on the features and situations Realtors are likely to run into on a day-to-day basis.  

"As Realtors, we're used to selling granite countertops and closet space, but when you start including geothermal heat sources, you are talking about a different kind of valuation," said panelist Craig Foley, a Realtor with RE/MAX Leading Edge in Somerville, Massachusetts. "Brokers need to make sure that they have specialists on their teams, and Realtors® with the Green Designation are those specialists."

According to the panelists, the demand for green is growing and today's consumers want homes and communities that are environmentally sustainable and resource efficient. The reasons behind this demand range from cost saving to Earth-saving.

"One of the main drivers of growing interest towards green features is their ability to lower home operating costs. However, there is also a growing understanding that we all need to take responsibility for our environmental impact," said Foley. "And buyers are willing to pay with their wallet to have those features in their home."

Read more about high performance home building.

Topics: Building Green, Certification / LEED, Cost of Ownership, Energy Star, Sustainability Trends & Statistics, Trends / Statistics

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