2010 Trends in Green Building and Why

Reports are emerging in every sector of the building industry that show New Energy and Energy Efficiency features do much more than reduce utility bills. They increase market value.

Buyers are coming to understand this and demand for homes and buildings with green features is growing. As a result of increasing demand for green building features, statistics show the sector was one of the few bright spots for the construction industry in 2009.

Well-documented findings, like those about the Pacific Northwest residential real estate market in Certified Home Performance: Assessing the Market Impacts of Third Party Certification on Residential Properties, by Ann Griffin of the Earth Advantage Institute, are the basis for a prediction about emerging green building trends from Sean Penrith of Earth Advantage.

In Griffin’s investigative research, a sample of third-party certified homes in the Portland and Seattle metropolitan areas was selected. Certified homes in the Seattle metro area sold at a price premium of 9.6% when compared to comparable noncertified counterparts. Certified homes in the Portland metro area sold at a 3%-to-5% price premium. In addition, certified homes were on the market 18 days less than noncertified homes. Griffin’s paper includes references to a variety of market studies with comparable findings.

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Penrith says that because of such fundamental economic facts there are 10 trends that will lead green building in 2010 and expand on its ability to incorporate New Energy and principles of Energy Efficiency… ::continue::

10 trends that will lead green building in 2010:

1. The smart grid and connected home.

2. Energy labeling for homes and office buildings.

3. Building information modeling (BIM) software.

4. Buy-in to green building by the financial community.

5. “Rightsizing” of homes.

6. Eco-districts.

7. Water conservation.

8. Carbon Calculation.

9. Net Zero Buildings.

10. Sustainable building education.

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This is exciting news in and of itself but it is part of a much bigger trend. Polls show broad support nationwide among all demographics and both political parties for New Energy. Few have found a way to use this overwhelming majority to move the recalcitrants in Congress but many are working on it.

Washington, D.C., is likely to see green building of a political sort in 2010.

Typical of polls taken over the last year. (click to enlarge)

This post is based on Top Ten Green Building Trends To Watch In 2010, Sean Penrith, January 8, 2010, Earth Advantage Institute

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