What’s Driving the Green Building Market Today?

Recent reports by McGraw-Hill show that quality and value are driving up the green building market in its latest SmartMarket Report: New and Remodeled Green Homes. The report shows an estimate by McGraw-Hill Construction that green homes share of the construction market was at 17 percent in 2011, equal to $17 billion. This number is also expected to rise 29 to 38 percent by 2016, turning this green building market into an $87 to $114 billion opportunity. The report showed how the two factors of quality and value are continuously pushing the market growth upward.

"In the current residential market, there is an enormous need to differentiate your homes for consumers," said Harvey Bernstein, Vice President of Industry Insights and Alliances at McGraw-Hill Construction. "When builders are able to offer homes that not only are green, but also offer the combination of higher quality and better value, they have a major competitive edge over those building traditional homes."

NAHB and Waste management helped in the development of the report, which was meant to showcase new aspects of market and product values in the single family home building and remodeling industry. The research was drawn primarily from surveys and the extensive McGraw-Hill Construction Dodge database.

There are some key factors that are necessary to understand from this report and how it will continue to affect the market over the years:

  • There will be higher quality standards for new homes being built. For builders who are creating new green homes, the importance of the quality is even bigger. In that case, 90 percent of builders will look at high quality as a reason to build green.
  • Customers are focused on value when they buy properties. About two-thirds of remodeler responses and builders stated that customers are looking for green homes specifically. They are also looking for remodeling projects to lower their energy or save money.
  • In 2008, green building costs were much higher at first. Now, those first costs of building green have dropped as new technology and products have become more mainstream.

Jim Halter, Vice President of Construction Solutions for Waste Management said in reference to the report findings that there has been a shift in the market and that the market will continue to focus on energy efficiency in addition to sustainability.

The report also reflects the popularity of certain pages on RemodelingCentral that specifically focus on green projects for different parts of the home as well as the return value for adding in newer energy conscious and sustainable designs. Look for ways to go green in your home and check out our blog for ideas on projects and products to use for a more energy conscious home.

Amy Wright
Amy Wright is the Lead Editor of Remodeling Central. When she isn't playing with her dogs she is trying to remodel a classic Chicago style brownstone with her husband.

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