NAHB Study Reveals What “Green” Means to Home Buyers

September 21, 2015

What do consumers think of green homes? And, what are the most important elements of a green-built home? Builders and other industry professionals now have an opportunity to find out what green means to home buyers with a new publication from the National Association of Home Builders (NAHB).

NAHB’s publishing arm, BuilderBooks, recently released What Green Means to Home Buyers: Perceptions and Preferences, a study of consumer preferences focusing exclusively on green/high-performance features in the home and the community. The study examines consumers’ attitudes of various green features, concepts or terminologies, the resonance of those terms as potential marketing tools, and the likelihood that the home purchase decision may be influenced by any of these features or terms.

The study was conducted by NAHB in 2015 and is based on a survey of home buyers nationwide. Results from the study are available by age, income, race and Census division, among other demographic characteristics.

“This new study is an incredibly useful tool to help builders and remodelers determine not only consumer attitudes towards green homes, but also which green features consumers care most about,” said NAHB Chairman Tom Woods, a home builder from Blue Springs, Mo. “We have seen incredible growth in green and sustainable building over the years, and the results of this survey only further solidify the continued consumer interest in green building, and which attributes matter most these buyers.”

Among the key findings, include:

Top Influencers in a Home Purchase Decision:

  • 90% Safe community
  • 88% Energy efficient
  • 85% Low maintenance
  • 85% Lower operating costs
  • 84% Durable/Resilient

Common Words Home Buyers Use to Describe Green Homes:

  • 32%: Efficient, Energy Efficient, Water Efficient, High Efficiency
  • 15%: Eco-friendly, Environmentally-friendly, Environmentally-responsible, Environmentally-safe, Environmentally-conscious
  • 8%: Solar, Solar Power, Solar Energy, Solar Panels
  • 4%: Lower Costs, Lower Utility Bills, Saves Money

What Green Means to Home Buyers: Perceptions and Preferences is available for purchase ($115.95 Retail/$79.95 NAHB Member, ISBN 978-0-86718-739-7) at or by calling 800-223-2665. The eBook is available at  ($89.99 Retail/$55.99 for NAHB Members).

The NAHB webinar, What Does ‘Green’ Mean to Home Buyers is also available for purchase ($64.95 Retail/$44.95 NAHB Member) at

[Editor’s Note: Editors who are interested in receiving a complimentary copy of What Green Means to Home Buyers: Perceptions and Preferences to review for their publications should contact Patricia Potts at 202-266-8224 or].


ABOUT BUILDERBOOKS: BuilderBooks publishes educational products for the housing industry and is the official bookstore for the National Association of Home Builders, offering a variety of books, software, brochures, and more in English and Spanish.

ABOUT NAHB: The National Association of Home Builders is a Washington-based trade association representing more than 140,000 members involved in home building, remodeling, multifamily construction, property management, subcontracting, design, housing finance, building product manufacturing and other aspects of residential and light commercial construction. NAHB is affiliated with 800 state and local home builders associations around the country. NAHB's builder members will construct about 80 percent of the new housing units projected for this year.

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