Think Green

Energy efficiency is on your clients’ minds.
Shouldn’t it be on yours?

Energy efficiency and “green” have become part of the American lexicon and part of the thought process for many U.S. homebuyers and sellers. Consider this:

  • The National Association of REALTORS® (NAR) 2007 NAR Profile of Buyers’ Home Features Preferences reported that 46 percent of all buyers consider that energy efficiency is very important, and another 46 percent consider it at least somewhat important.
  • A survey conducted by NAR in March of 2008 indicated that 87 percent of REALTORS® think energy efficiency is the most important aspect of a “green” home to their clients.
  • National Association of Home Builders (NAHB) research released in early 2008 indicates that clients are willing to pay for efficiency. Over half of those surveyed said they were willing to pay between $5,000 and $11,000 more for a home with lower utility bills.

Whether buying or selling, it’s good business for REALTORS® to highlight the energy-efficient features of a home. As an informed REALTOR® you can guide clients through marketing or buying an energy-efficient home, one that will ultimately provide better customer satisfaction; reduce monthly utility bills for the homeowner; and, if you know how to market it, command a higher asking price at resale.

Furthermore, the one of the best places to start going green is in your own office. There are plenty of resources available to help you make your office and your business more energy efficient.

Below, the U.S. Department of Energy (DOE) provides a digest of resources for REALTORS® to learn more about energy-efficiency and how to incorporate it into their businesses.

1. Online Resources

Web site

Description

Home Energy Calculators

Find handy online calculators to help clients evaluate the home’s energy use and potential need for energy-efficient improvements.

Database of State Incentives for Renewables & Efficiency (DSIRE)

DSIRE is a comprehensive source of consumer information on state, local, utility, and federal financial incentives that promote renewable energy and energy efficiency.

PATH

Previously the Partnership for Advancing Techology in Housing

A HUD program with a plethora of useful information great for anyone wishing to learn more about better building practices and technologies.

DOE Office of Energy Efficiency & Renewable Energy (EERE)

Learn more about programs supporting EERE’s mission to enhance energy efficiency and productivity; and make a difference in the everyday lives of Americans by enhancing their energy choices and their quality of life.

DOE’s Home E-Scale

EERE’s E-Scale is an easy-to-understand tool that helps homebuyers and homeowners make smart energy decisions when purchasing, renting, or updating a home.

ENERGY STAR®

ENERGY STAR is a joint program of the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency and DOE helping save money and protect the environment through energy efficient products and practices.

ENERGY STAR® Qualified Products

Products in more than 50 categories are eligible for the ENERGY STAR. If it is carrying the ENERGY STAR label, they use less energy, save money, and help protect the environment.

Residential Energy Services Network (RESNET®)

RESNET is a non-profit membership organization which also certifies professional energy raters and sets standards for energy ratings. Find an energy auditor in your area.

Home Performance with ENERGY STAR® Programs

Home Performance with ENERGY STAR (HPwES) is a program designed to help homeowners make money-saving energy improvements to the home. HPwES has strict quality control guidelines in place. See if a program exists in your neighborhood.

NAHB Research Center Housing Technologies Inventory

The Technology Inventory provides builders and interested homeowners a reliable source of information on new products or processes. Includes details on each technology and contact information for the manufacturers.

Alliance to Save Energy

The Alliance to Save Energy promotes energy efficiency worldwide to achieve a healthier economy, a cleaner environment and greater energy security.

NAR’s Green Building Web Page

Articles and more resources on green building from your National Association.

U.S. Green Building Council

The U.S. Green Building Council is a 501(c)(3) non-profit community of leaders working to make green buildings available to everyone within a generation.

Energy Savers Tips for Consumers

This site can help you and your clients explore options for saving energy and using renewable energy at home, at work, in the community, and even while driving.

Connecticut Energy Facts

Official energy statistics provided by the Energy Information Administration

Connecticut Heating Oil Prices

Connecticut heating oil prices provided by the Connecticut Office of Policy & Management

Air Leaks

Information on sealing air leaks provided by the U.S. Dept. of Energy

Connecticut Energy Information

CTENERGYINFO was developed by The Connecticut Department of Public Utility Control in conjunction with The Institute for Sustainable Energy to assist consumers in locating information about energy-related subjects and the strategies that can be used to lower energy consumption and cost.

2. REALTOR® Resources & Client Handouts

Title

Description

2009 Family Guide to Going Green

A great handout produced by: GreenREsourceCouncil.org. Provides information for homeowners that includes payback by year for energy inprovements.

2009 Office Guide to Going Green

A great handout produced by the GreenREsourceCounicl.org. Provides information for commercial buildings that includes payback by year for energy inprovements.

Energy Saver$ Brochure

A great handout. Tips on saving energy and money at home.

Energy Guidance

Helps clients understand the EnergyGuide label and how it can help compare the energy use of different appliance models.

Home Energy Saver

A great online calculator designed to help consumers identify the ways to save energy given their own unique circumstances and timeframe, and find the resources to make the savings happen.

HUD’s Hurricane Retrofit Strategies

Information and handouts to repair or help prevent hurricane damage to the home. Great for clients in the Gulf States.

3. Office and Small Business Resources

Title

Description

Product recycling

Hewlett Packard’s information on recycling computer equipment, printing supplies, rechargeable batteries and other items.

Greening Your Office and Saving Money

Whether you realize it or not, your company produces waste. And waste is a waste of time, money, resources and productivity. This fact sheet was developed to help you reduce and recycle waste at the office level.

Putting Energy into Profits

Virtually any small business can improve its energy efficiency easily and cost-effectively, using the numerous resources that are available both from ENERGY STAR, as well as a wide variety of other organizations.

Earth911

Great information resource for recycling just about anything; as well as other green info. See the recycling guide (enter zip code) at the top of the home page.

4. En Español

Title

Description

Ahorro de Energía

Ahorro de Energía brinda consejos a los propietarios de viviendas para que puedan ahorrar energía y dinero en su hogar y en la carretera.

Ahorro de Energía folleto

La información contenida en este sitio Web también está disponible en formato PDF.

Spanish Coloring Book

Un mundo bello comienza contigo.

ENERGY STAR

Recursos en Español.

5. For Kids

Title

Description

Kids Saving Energy

Games, tips, and facts just for kids who want to save energy!

Roofus’ Solar & Efficient Home

For the science and technology-minded kid, a fun way to explore solar energy.

Energy Science Projects & Activities

Great ideas for science fair time!

Student Energy Competitions & Contests

Motivate the great kids in your community to get involved.

6. Articles

Title

Source

On Common Ground: Selling Green

REALTOR Articles

On Common Ground: Megatrends Affecting Us All

REALTOR Articles

NAR and DOE–A New Partnership!

RISMedia PowerBroker Network Report

Eco–Savvy Selling

REALTOR Magazine

Not Just for Tree Huggers Anymore

REALTOR Magazine

Green Buyers Welcome

REALTOR Magazine

Finding Energy Leaks 

REALTOR Magazine

Green: Easy Does It

REALTOR Magazine

Is Green Turning to Gold?

Today’s Buyer’s Rep

7. Other

Do you have electronics that need to be recycled? You can drop them off at Best Buy. For more information go to the Best Buy Recyling page.

Page content provided by:
ENERGY STAR, U.S. Department of Energy Real Estate Initiative
(Contact Julie Hawkins at 301.588.9387 for further information)