Survey Finds Homebuyers Want Green

As the housing market has tanked in recent years, there appears to be a green silver lining. According to a new survey by ZipRealty, 55% of all home shoppers now cite green home features, from energy efficient appliances to solar panels, as an important part of their purchasing decision.

This national survey involved active ZipRealty.com users who registered on the Website in April and May, 2010, with 745 total respondents across the United States. The survey found that homebuyers who view green features as a priority ranked them important because they helped save money (49 percent), as well as allowed them to do their part to help the environment (40 percent); other reasons included occupant/family health (37 percent), tax credit availability (12 percent) and the home’s resale value (15 percent).

Perhaps the biggest finding of the survey, however, was that homebuyers overwhelmingly rated energy efficiency the most important green feature in a home (89 percent), despite the fact that–in an additional survey of MLS-listed homes across 35 markets nationwide–the brokerage found that less than one percent of homes on the market included the term in their description.

Green Homes 1

image via Living Room Realtors

In response to the findings of this survey, ZipReality has announced that they’ll be the first real estate company to integrate green-friendly Transit Score ratings into current home listings on its popular home-buying site, based on the popularity of the existing Walk Score feature, which scores the walkability of each listing.

“A growing number of home shoppers are seeking out homes that offer strong public transit options, high walkabilty scores and green features,” said ZipRealty’s “Chief Home Hunter” Leslie Tyler, in a statement. “Showing Transit Score ratings for all home listings on our website gives our clients additional information about alternative transportation that they need before making an offer on a home.”

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Susan DeFreitas has covered all manner of green technology for EarthTechling since 2009. She is a graduate of Prescott College for the Liberal Arts and the Environment, and has a background in marketing green businesses. Her work on green living has been featured in Yes! Magazine, the Utne Reader and Natural Home.