Are you buying a home soon or sometime in the future? Let’s look at how home buyers can gauge a property for sustainability.
Home buyers consider several factors while looking for a dream property. Typically, you must choose a home according to your current and future needs. Property size, features, location, and neighborhood amenities are the top factors most buyers consider.
However, modern buyers go a step ahead to ensure sustainability. But you may not really know what goes into a sustainable home if you are new to the eco-friendliness bandwagon. Let us share some tips to help you gauge a property for sustainability and choose wisely.
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1. Choose a compact living space
Bigger is not always better when it comes to buying a home. Of course, the ideal size depends on your needs, but choosing a compact home is a wise decision.
A compact design optimizes space and achieves more with less square footage. It is inherently sustainable because of lower heating and cooling needs. Besides being more energy efficient, compact homes are also more economical.
Mastering your design concepts is the best way to choose a home that offers a comfortable dwelling for your family without wasting the floor area.
2. Check the building materials
Green homes are much about building materials as sustainable designs. The good thing is that developers are more conscious about using eco-friendly construction materials coming from recycled products and local sources.
For example, fly ash bricks generate nearly zero waste. Likewise, locally-sourced products reduce the environmental impact by minimizing carbon emissions due to transport. Non-toxic paints and polishes ensure good health for the residents.
3. Listen to the land
Not listening to the land is the worst mistake home buyers make when looking for a sustainable property. A home built over wetlands is bad for the environment, so you must check the Wetlands Map of the area before sealing the deal.
Also, explicitly ask the seller or developer about environmental due diligence for the lot. You can go the extra mile by opting for a greenfield development because it is free of environmental toxins and pollutants.
4. Prioritize energy-efficient features
Energy-efficient features give a home full marks on sustainability. Look for the basics, such as a design that facilitates a steady stream of natural light for the interiors.
Features like LED lighting, smart automation, and energy-efficient appliances add to the value of an energy-efficient home.
Solar panels take your investment a notch higher as they go beyond reducing your energy bills. You can even claim tax credits for going the extra mile with a sustainable lifestyle.
5. Look for water savings
Water conservation is another critical element of a sustainable property, but most buyers overlook it because the focus is on energy efficiency. A building with a water harvesting system makes an excellent choice from an eco-consciousness perspective.
The best part is that the system prevents water shortages in the summertime. Efficient faucet fixtures are a plus as they control the water flow and reduce wastage.
Are Home Prices Sustainable?
Home prices have been rising for years, and experts say that this trend will continue. But how much higher can they go?
Is it the price of homes or housing as a whole?
In general, home prices tend to rise when interest rates fall and vice versa. This means that the price of homes tends to follow the rate at which people borrow money to buy them. If interest rates drop, more people will be able to afford to buy a house, so home prices should rise.
However, there are other factors that affect home prices besides interest rates. These include the number of new houses being built, the supply of existing homes, and the demand for those homes.
Do we include land values?
Land value is an important factor in determining whether home prices are sustainable. It’s not just the cost of building a house; it also includes the cost of land.
As the population grows, the need for housing increases and the availability of land decreases. So as the population continues to grow, the cost of land will continue to go up.
Does it matter whether we look at single-family homes or condos?
If you look at the price per square foot of land, then yes, home prices are likely unsustainable. However, when you consider the total number of units sold, then the answer becomes more complicated.
In fact, there are some areas where home prices are actually increasing. This is because people are buying multiple properties instead of one large property.
How Are Housing Prices Sustainable?
The cost of living in America has been rising for decades, and many people blame the increasing costs on the growing number of Americans who live in cities. But there are other factors that contribute to higher housing prices, including government policies and regulations.
The Demand Side.
There are two main reasons why housing prices go up: demand and supply.
Demand side: People buy homes because they think they will make money off of them later. This is called “investment demand.”
Supply-side: Homes are built by builders, and these builders build more houses than they need to meet the demand. This is called ‘supply and demand’.
The Supply Side.
On the supply side, there are three main things that affect how much housing is available. First, people who own homes tend to sell them when they decide to move somewhere else.
Second, new construction tends to be limited by zoning laws and other regulations.
Third, some homeowners choose not to sell their homes and instead rent out the space.
The Government’s Role.
The government has an important role to play in creating more affordable housing. They can do this by increasing the number of units that are made available through building new housing projects, reducing barriers to entry into the market (such as zoning laws), and providing incentives to encourage homeowners to sell their properties.
The Impact of Technology.
It’s also important to consider how technology affects the housing market. As people become increasingly reliant on smartphones and other devices, they will spend less time interacting with real estate agents and more time looking up listings online.
This means that there will be fewer face-to-face interactions between buyers and sellers, which will reduce the demand for homes.
The Future of Real Estate Investing.
There are several reasons why housing prices are rising. First, there has been an increase in the number of millennials entering the workforce. These young adults are typically more mobile than previous generations, meaning they tend to move frequently.
They also tend to prefer living in urban areas, where housing costs are higher. Finally, these individuals are often willing to take on debt to purchase a home, which further drives up housing prices.
Sharing is Caring
How do you gauge a property for sustainability?
Buying a sustainable home is easier than you imagine, provided you know what makes them eco-friendly. You can rely on these factors to gauge a property before closing the deal.
Angela Ricardo Bethea says
Those are some great and important tips to keep in mind. Thanks for sharing this informative post with us, definitely learned a lot.
These are great practical tips. Thank you for mentioning the need and importance of listing to the land. I agree with you that this is often overlooked and a common mistake by home buyers. Thank you for reminding us.
I try to live a more sustainable life with my husband, and know when we are ready to buy our dream property these tips for finding it will come in handy. It’s a lot to consider that I didn’t think of before. Thanks for sharing!
Fransic verso says
I like the idea of listening to the land. These are very important and I’m glad to know them before buying a home. Thank you for sharing!
Mila R says
well, I have never thought of gauging a property for sustainability. Interesting read tho!
The housing market has officially made me crazy. I wanted to buy but prices got too high. If I were buying again though, I’d definitely check the wetlands map. That’s not something I’d have ever thought to do!
Yes, a bigger size doesn’t mean better. Plus, I agree that building materials are important. You share really useful tips in this article.
Gervin Khan says
This is such a great article, it’s very informative and detailed! Definitely a big help especially to those first-timers buying a property! I’ll take note of everything on this for future reference! Thanks!
Sonia Seivwright says
Property investing is hot right now. I will definitely look into investing in sustainable homes after this. Thank you for sharing.
I’ve never though of sustainability as it relates to a home. It makes total sense, though. Homes use a lot of material and a lot of energy.