energy-efficiency-154006_1280When it comes to “green” practices, it’s a surprise to absolutely no one that the West Coast in general, and the Pacific Northwest in particular, are leaders. When it comes to green realty, studies have long shown that buyers in our region of the world are willing to pay a premium for ecologically friendly homes. This is not news. What is news is the extent to which this has become a nationwide phenomenon, and the depth of the phenomenon.

In previous studies, it’s been shown time-and-again that people will pay more for new homes in our region that are ecologically friendly. But The Washington Post has released a story about this same impact from green realty, in the other Washington. From my perspective, the key takeaways are that

  1. People all over the country are starting to pay a premium for green
  2. It’s not just new properties, but properties that have had green renovations and upgrades

Given those two points, I think there are a few key things that we, as industry professionals, need to be doing.


Lenders need to work with whomever they use for appraisals, even if it’s an outside appraisal management company, to ensure that the appraisers in the field are educated on the impact of green realty.


Appraisers need to get, and stay, up to speed on the latest green technology, and its impact on real estate prices — both in general, and in their specific regions.


The MLS system should be upgraded to make identification of key, green features much easier.

Real Estate Agents

At least until the MLS system is updated, and possibly afterwards, agents should be sure to complete the Appraisal Institute’s appropriate addendum for green and energy efficient real estate. The addenda for both commercial and residential real estate are available here.

If we all work together, not only will the planet be better off, but our clients will be happier in their homes, and we’ll all be a little bit more successful in our careers.

Go go green!