WASHINGTON – April 7, 2017 – Growing consumer interest and demand for greener, more sustainable properties is driving more conversations between Realtors® and homebuyers and sellers. According to the National Association of Realtors’ (NAR) recent Realtors and Sustainability report, over half of Realtors said that consumers are interested in real estate sustainability issues and practices.
“As consumers’ interest in sustainability grows, Realtors understand the necessity of promoting sustainability in their real estate practice, such as marketing energy efficiency in property listings to homebuyers,” says NAR President William E. Brown. “The goal of the NAR Sustainability Program is to provide leadership and strategies on topics of sustainability to benefit members, consumers and communities.”
To meet growing consumer interest, more Multiple Listing Services (MLSs) are incorporating data entry fields to identify a property’s green features; 43 percent of respondents report their MLS has green data fields, and only 19 percent do not. Realtors see great value in promoting energy efficiency in listings, with seven out of 10 feeling strongly about the benefits in promoting those features to clients.
The survey asked respondents about renewable energy and its impact on the real estate market. A majority of agents and brokers (80 percent) said that solar panels are available in their market; forty-two percent said solar panels increased the perceived property value.
Twenty-four percent of brokers said that tiny homes were available in their market, compared to 61 percent that reported tiny homes were not yet available. When asked about involvement with clients and green properties, 27 percent of agents and brokers were involved with 1 to 5 properties that had green features in the last 12 months. Seventy percent of members worked with no properties that had green features, leaving a great deal of room for future growth.
The home features that Realtors said clients consider as very or somewhat important include a home’s efficient use of lighting (50 percent), a smart/connected home (40 percent), green community features such as bike lanes and green spaces (37 percent), landscaping for water conservation (32 percent), and renewable energy systems such as solar and geothermal (23 percent).
When it comes to the sustainable neighborhood features that clients favor, 60 percent of Realtors listed parks and outdoor recreation, 37 percent listed access to local food and nine percent listed recycling.
The transportation and commuting features of a community that Realtors listed as very or somewhat important to their clients included walkability (51 percent), public transportation (31 percent) and bike lanes/paths (39 percent).
© 2017 Florida Realtors