How to Get a Premium for Your Energy-Efficient Home

While location, design and price are a home buyer’s main considerations, surveys show that buyers rank energy efficiency as one of the most desirable features – and importantly, one they are willing to pay more for.


“Eighty-five percent of properties sold is aging housing stock with high utility bills, obsolete technology and durability issues,” said Scott Robinson, president of the Appraisal Institute. “Seventy-one percent of buyers want energy-efficient homes and 58% of renters want an energy-efficient apartment,” he added. “Consumers expect it. They don’t want to do energy-efficient projects themselves.”
One of the problems with selling high-performance homes for builders, however, is that energy efficiency can be overlooked in the appraisal process.
Experts who spoke on the topic at a Jan. 20 educational seminar held during the International Builders’ Show in Las Vegas said that this happens for a variety of reasons including a lack of access to quality data, underwriting impediments and appraiser qualifications.
One step builders can take to make the process more favorable is finding a lender who is willing to hire specially-trained appraisers who are qualified to assess the value of energy features that are often hidden behind the drywall.
Fannie Mae, Freddie Mac and Federal Housing Administration guidelines require appraisers to consider the energy-efficient features of the home, and if the market supports an adjustment in the appraised value, one must be made. But an average appraiser won’t take this into account if they are not aware of it.
Builders can access a list of qualified appraisers who are specially trained on energy-efficient, high-performing homes at Read the full story

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