Homes with eco-conscious features can sell faster and for more money than similar homes without them, a new analysis from Zillow found.
Zillow looked at environment-related features mentioned in listing descriptions for 3.1 million home sales in 2020 and 2021. The analysis found that homes featuring electric vehicle chargers and drought-resistant landscaping can sell nine days faster than similar homes.
Features that protect against climate-related disasters such as hurricane shutters can sell for as much as 2.4% more than expected.
Energy-efficient features can also help homes sell for more money and sometimes faster, with listings that mention solar panels selling for 1.4% more and listings including smart sprinkler systems and smart lights selling up to six days faster than expected.
“Climate change is impacting what buyers are looking for in a home and how they want to live,” said Amanda Pendleton, Zillow’s home trends expert.
“A previous Zillow survey found nearly two-thirds of young adults believe climate change will impact their homes or communities in their lifetime. Those generations are now aging into their prime home-buying years, conscious of their ecological footprint and making purchase decisions based on their beliefs, values, and principles.”
More than 14.5 million single- and multifamily homes were impacted by natural disasters in 2021, causing an estimated $56.92 billion in property damage.
Homebuyers are increasingly concerned about climate-related risks when deciding where to buy a home. In one survey, more than 3 in 4 recent buyers took natural disasters into account when choosing the locations of their homes. Millennial and Gen Z homebuyers are particularly wary of potential climate disruption.
Mortgage professionals have also taken notice.
“The mortgage industry will not be spared by the growing impact climate change is having on the environment, governments, and individuals,” Sean Becketti, author of a Mortgage Bankers Association report on climate risk, said.
“Climate mitigation efforts are necessary to slow the adverse effects of global warming, and better and more standardized predictors of environmental risks are needed to make housing and housing finance more resilient.”