Market demand for green building in Charlottesville

Yesterday I had a request for market data regarding green homes in the Charlottesville area. Someone is trying to gauge market demand for green building in the area. Right now there is a media blitz in Charlottesville for green homes. The Real Estate Weekly, newcomer House and Home, the Green Matters series being run by Habitat for Humanity,(their links page is here) …

 Files Current Issue 06072007  June Cover
Right now there are 17 properties on the market here with the term “EarthCraft” in the remarks, and 3 with “Earth Craft;” (Large PDFs are here as the links expire in 10 days)

Charlottesville is consistently rated as one of the top “green” places in the country.

I perceive the current demand in this market to be quite high, higher perhaps than some people think. (I noted buyers’ demands a few weeks ago). More buyers are asking for utility bills to more accurately gauge what their monthly costs of living will be. More buyers are asking about the energy efficiency of windows and insulation. Many buyers note that windows and insulation will be among the first upgrades they made after they purchase. More are considering sustainable flooring such as bamboo and cork. The demand is there. How to measure that demand, amidst a slower market is the question. The time is takes to accurately gauge market trends is longer, as inventory is staying on the market much longer.

Building and renovating green are more long-term decisions that many in the market – buyers, builders, Realtors, lenders – are not yet used to.

I have written before that those builders and developers who aren’t building green in the next 3-5 years, will be left behind. In fact, I gave a presentation about technology and other stuff at another real estate company in town last week. When I started the previous sentence, two of their Realtors finished it for me.

Further reading:

Wall Street Journal: Small firms see big potential in going green
Award-Winning home design requires no heating, cooling equipment
The future of suburbs: “Suppies”

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3 Comments

  1. Amber June 13, 2007 at 16:50

    Charlottesville still has some work to do in becoming a truly green city. Two good goals would be adequate bike lanes for commuters and more full-service curbside recycling.

  2. Jim Duncan June 14, 2007 at 11:06

    Amber –

    Thanks for stopping by. I agree with both of those goals. A larger part of those ought to be to integrate those bike lanes with Albemarle as well.