NAR: Energy Efficiency Becoming More Popular Among Buyers

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The number of Realtors involved with buying or selling a property with energy efficiency features has significantly increased in the past year, according to a recent study from the National Association of Realtors.

The 2022 Realtors and Sustainability Report polled NAR members across the country about current sustainability issues in the real estate industry.

Half of the agents and brokers polled said they assisted a client in buying or selling a green-featured property in the previous 12 months, a significant increase from 32% in 2021.

Almost two-thirds of respondents (63%) thought that promoting energy efficiency in listings was very or somewhat valuable. More than half of agents and brokers (51%) discovered that their clients were somewhat or very interested in sustainability.

In addition, 35% said their multiple listing service has green data fields. Among those who had green data fields in their MLS, the most common uses were to promote green features (35%), energy information (24%), and green certifications (13 percent ).

“Sustainability continues to play a growing role in consumer purchasing decisions, and this is becoming even more prevalent in the real estate market,” said NAR President Leslie Rouda Smith, a Plano, Texas, Realtor and broker associate at Dave Perry-Miller Real Estate in Dallas.

“In particular, in the residential property market, homebuyers have expressed increased interest in eco-friendly factors such as solar panels and energy efficiency.”

Approximately three out of every four Realtors (77%) said that properties with rooftop solar panels were available in their market.

The West (89 percent) and Northeast (89 percent) had the highest percentages (86 percent ). Thirty-six percent of respondents said solar panels increased the perceived property value of their home, while 30% said they had no effect.

According to the report, Realtors are becoming increasingly concerned about the impact of climate change and extreme weather events on their businesses.

More than one-third of respondents (34%) were very or somewhat concerned about the impact of extreme weather events on the housing market.

According to Jessica Lautz, NAR vice president of demographics and behavioral insights, the increased emphasis on sustainability in recent years is a win-win situation for all homeowners.

“More sustainable homes provide homeowners with benefits such as cost savings from energy efficiency, health benefits from improved indoor air quality, increased comfort and durability from material use and construction, and may also increase resale value,” Lautz explained.

Owen is one of our main correspondents based out of New York.