An article in the Austin American-Statesman talks about the increasing demand for “hybrid” homes (the term hybrid relating to an analogy with fuel-efficient automobiles). In a slow housing market, energy features can add value,especially in Austin, where
custom homebuilders like Ray Tonjes are adding energy-saving features like thicker insulation, sealed attics and ductwork, and dual-speed air conditioner compressors to meet customer demand for more energy-efficient houses. Some companies do nothing but green-built homes. And the city has the nation’s pioneering green building certification and education program, as well as an aggressive incentive program for energy-efficient appliances.
The article goes on to say that “a household can reduce energy expenditures by 50 percent just by using equipment such as more efficient heaters, air conditioners, water heaters, appliances and electronics and by using compact fluorescent lighting,” and mentions a BASF Corp. concept home that’s 80 percent more efficient. This is especially compelling given the potential for energy costs to increase in coming years.
How important is energy efficiency to you, as a home buyer? Or if you’re a seller, what energy features might you add to make your home more attractive in today’s market?