Green Building: What's Next?

The latest report on the residential market shows greater emphasis on green features by both consumers and construction pros alike.


They’re of higher quality and they save consumers money.


Those are the two key factors contributing to the green-home market growth, according to the latest, “SmartMarket Report” from McGraw-Hill Construction, released at the recent National Association of Home Builders’ National Green Building Conference in Nashville, Tenn.


The report, “New and Remodeled Green Homes: Transforming the Residential Market,” estimates that green homes accounted for 17 percent (or $17 billion) of the construction market in 2011.  Those numbers are expected to rise to anywhere from 29 percent to 38 percent by 2016, with a potential opportunity of $87 billion to $114 billion, based on the five year forecast for overall construction.


Factors driving the green-home market growth include:

1)     Higher quality for both new-home builders and remodelers.  Ninety percent of those who build green homes for at least 60 percent of their business regard higher quality as an important factor for building green, compared to 72 percent of overall builders.


2)     Customers are strongly value-driven.  About two-thirds of builders and remodelers say customers request green homes or remodeling projects to lower their energy use or save money, more than double any other factor.  The shift toward green also resulting in key practices an technologies taking over the residential marketplace.


3)     More than 80 percent of builders and remodelers report that energy efficient is making today’s home greener compared to two years ago.  Increasing energy efficiency is the top green practice used by nearly all builders and remodelers.


4)     Indoor air quality is growing in importance, with 95 percent of high-volume green builders reporting that they include features that impact air quality.


5)     More than half of construction pros also consider durable materials one of the most important features in today’s home – another key reason green homes and remodeling projects are considered higher quality.


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