Whether they’re environmentalists or not, today’s home buyers appreciate hearing about a home’s geothermal system, solar panels, Energy Star-rated appliances or LEED certification.
Home builders and sellers of upgraded homes with “green” features want their prospective buyers to know about these features because they likely spent a good amount of money on them. But do the buyers always care? Will they pay extra — and does “green” actually sell a home? The answer is, it all depends.
The feature, fixture or finish?
Buyers pay for features they can touch, feel and show off to their friends and family — the spa-like bath, media room or a chef’s kitchen. They probably won’t pay extra when it comes to the home improvements they can’t see or appreciate, such as the roof, boiler or new plumbing.
Green features fall somewhere in between. A certain “cool factor” exists for solar panels or an energy-saving thermostat you control from your smartphone. And, for that reason, a buyer will pay extra. But will they pay extra for a home with the less-exciting features like reclaimed hardwood and unique air filtration systems, compared to a similar home lacking these? The answer, for the most part, is no.