New Webinar: The Most Desired Sustainability Upgrades for Homes

For more information about what’s on the mind of the most influential audience segment of home buyers, join nationally renowned green builder CR Herro and me for a free webinar on May 18 at 2:00 pm Eastern.  

Green Builder Media’s next webinar is in response to how quickly the housing sector is changing. What’s spurred this? The ugly trifecta of labor challenges, material shortages, and soaring prices—set against the backdrop of climate change.

Now more than ever before, climate change considerations are driving home buyer decisions as natural disasters and extreme weather events continue to intensify, and as insurance providers cancel coverage in areas that are prone to wildfires, flooding, rising sea levels, tornadoes, and superstorms.

In fact, a recent COGNITION Smart Data survey of over 1,000 homeowners throughout the U.S. reveals that more than 80% of respondents say that climate change has impacted decisions they’ve made about buying and remodeling homes. Sellers are making significant investments in resiliency upgrades in order to appeal to increasingly savvy buyers. Consider these stats from the survey:

  •  23% of survey respondents maintain that their homes are impacted by hurricanes;
  • 19% by tornadoes;
  • 17% by extreme temperatures;
  • 15% by wildfires; and
  • 10% by drought.

Top Sustainability Priorities

Which sustainability upgrades matter most to homeowners? Given the prolonged pandemic, it’s not surprising that “healthy home” tops the list, followed by net-zero, and smart home technologies. Interestingly, respondents indicated that electrification is also top of mind.

When asked about the sustainability attributes that homeowners are willing to pay for, energy efficiency and resiliency were the front runners, followed by solar + storage, connected living, and enhanced outdoor living.  

60% of respondents said that they’d pay between $1,001-$5,000 for energy efficiency upgrades, and 47% indicated that they’d pay the same amount for resiliency improvements. 

Reflecting increased awareness of the urgent need to decarbonize—and homeowners’ desire to play a part in the process—nearly 50% of respondents said that they’d pay an additional $5,000 for upgrades that would make their homes net-zero carbon.

Upping the ante, approximately 37% of respondents indicated that they’d spend $10,000 for healthy home upgrades, smart home systems, and solar + storage.  

With respect to specific products and technologies, 40% of respondents would pay up to $5,000 extra for heat pump water heaters, ERVs, energy-efficient windows, and sustainable flooring. 

Over 20% of respondents claimed they would invest an additional $10,000 for sustainable furniture, smart thermostats, smart sound systems, high-performance HVAC systems, sustainable countertops, energy-efficient insulation, leak detection, and water management technology, and demand-side energy management systems. 

Clearly, homeowners see the long-term value in investing in upgrades that reduce their home’s energy, water, and carbon footprint. 

Home Exterior Considerations

Homeowners are also thinking about resiliency on the outside of their homes in terms of both the self-sufficiency that comes with growing their own food and conserving water. 

When asked about their landscaping priorities, nearly 30% indicated edible plants and flowers were most important to them, 22% chose xeriscaping and drought tolerance, and 21% selected garden beds.

Furthermore, 21% indicated that water conservation was the most important sustainability factor when planning outdoor spaces, followed by food production at 19% and rainwater collection at 16%.

For more information about what’s on the mind of the most influential audience segment of homebuyers—millennials—join nationally renowned green builder CR Herro, Bettr Homes SVP Operations, and me for a free webinar, Millennial Essentials: What They Want, What They’ll Pay For, How to Give It to Them on Wednesday, May 18 at 2:00 pm Eastern. 

In this webinar, CR and I will explore the growing demand for net-zero, electric, healthy, resilient, connected, and sustainably designed homes.  I’ll share insights from COGNITION Smart Data, Green Builder Media’s market intelligence division, about consumer expectations, demands, and purchase drivers that are transforming the housing market and specific sustainability upgrades that millennials will pay for.  CR will offer ideas, solutions, and real-life use cases for designing, building, and retrofitting next-generation homes.