New analysis: Green Homes Outsell the Market

In a real estate market such as this, any edge helps. What if your home sold for 9.1% percent more than the competition? Why might a home do this you ask – because it is a certified green home, such as a LEED home.

Real estate professionals have anecdotally reported for years that Green homes sell faster and for more money than traditional (brown) homes. Now there is additional hard market data to support this, from an area that has had a Green MLS for quite a few years: Seattle.   And the data is recent – up to January 2010.

Here’s the full article and report:

Similar to the ability northern Illinois agents now have, real estate agents in Seattle can note whether a home has certifications from Built Green, Energy Star, LEED for Homes or other third-party verification. Agents can also download the certification as an attached document to the listing.

As a result these Environmentally-certified (“e-certified) homes have had some trend analysis done. There is a great accompanying graph showing trends in the Seattle area. It reveals that:

“certified green homes made up 33 percent of the new home market, sold for a 9.1 percent premium per square foot and were on the market for 24 percent less time. Further, from November 2009 through January 2010, King County non-certified homes continued to decrease in value as certified home values increased.”

Most interesting from a valuation perspective from this article is the following:

“It was eye-opening for appraisers to hear that in July 2009, two years of steady growth in market share of green homes culminated in over 49 percent of new homes sold that month with a certification. Over 50 percent, and appraisers will be required to discount any home that is not green, as that will have become the [new] market norm.”

So why are people (aka. the Market) paying for third party certification of their homes? The reasons vary among items such as the improved comfort and energy efficiency, the health of the home, and the durability and lower maintenance.

Granted, this data is from the Pacific Northwest market, not Illinois. But since Northern Illinois recently implemented a green MLS, this could be a picture of future trends a year or two down the road, once some market transactions start occurring.

These are exciting times for Illinois green building and LEED homes! For the full report, please visit:

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