Attention Austin, Texas, residents: Want your home to stand out when it’s time to sell? Ensure it’s a sustainably built model.
The findings come from a new study sponsored by the University of Texas-Austin and the U.S. Green Building Council.
A house built to meet green construction standards such as those in USGBC’s Leadership in Energy and Environmental Design building program fetch about $25,000 more than conventional homes in the Austin and Round Rock, Texas, area when sold, the study says.
"Our research shows there is a 'green premium’ in the Texas single-family home market,” said author Greg Hallman of the University of Texas-Austin. “The average new home in our Texas MLS (multiple listing service) dataset sells for $311,000, so a 6-8% green premium represents a significant gain for home owners, developers and real estate agents and brokers.”
The study, conducted at the Real Estate Finance & Investment Center at the University of Texas-Austin’s McCombs School of Business examined sales figures for more than 3,800 green-certified homes built between 2008 and 2016 in the region. Those were compared to 230,000 homes without green HVAC or other sustainable features to determine values.
Taryn Holowka, the USGBC’s senior vice president, said the results were not a surprise.
“As developers and buyers continue to see the value in LEED, we expect the number of LEED-certified homes to increase in the Texas market,” Holowka said. “Homes that are built to meet green standards deliver more value to the seller and also ensure that buyers will have a high-value sale down the road and reap the benefit of lower utility bills while living in the home.”
LEED-certified homes are healthier for occupants while saving energy and resources, the association said. LEED-certified homes typically use 20-30 percent less energy than those built to code minimums, officials said. Some houses save up to 60 percent more than typical residences.
Details on the study are here.