Green Building a Plus for Builders in Tough Market


This is an article from the National Home Builders Association.

Green Building a Plus for Builders in Tough Market

Home builders attending the May 11-13 NAHB National Green Building Show in New Orleans were told by market analysts that they have a long way to go to sell the benefits of sustainable construction technologies to their prospective customers.

But at a time when housing demand remains largely sluggish around the country, advances in green building are providing a notable shot in the arm for builders, and as the housing industry moves out of its cyclical downturn green business appears headed for a galloping rate of growth.

Builders polled in the latest survey by McGraw Hill Construction on the evolving trends and opportunities in the green residential marketplace cited demand from this quarter of the industry for keeping their businesses alive during hard times.

“We have hit the tipping point for builders going green,” said Harvey M. Bernstein, McGraw Hill’s vice president of industry analytics, alliance and strategic initiatives.

“This year, the number of builders who are moderately green — those with 30% green projects — has surpassed those with a low share of green — those who are green in less than 15% of their projects,” Bernstein said.

“Next year,” he predicted, “we will see even greater growth, with highly green builders — those with 60% green projects — surpassing those with a low share of green. This year has seen an 8% jump over last year, and we expect another 10% increase next year.”

“It’s official. Green has gone mainstream,” said Ray Tonjes, chair of the NAHB Green Building Subcommittee. “And now, the NAHB National Green Building Program is making it easier for home builders to provide sustainable, environmentally friendly homes for their customers. We’re ready for the market transformation that McGraw-Hill Construction estimates.”

“Green is driving a lot of what really is happening in this marketplace,” said Bernstein.

Green home building is poised to generate between $12 billion and $20 billion in sales this year, accounting for a 6% to 10% share of the housing market, according to the McGraw Hill report, up from $7 billion in home sales and a 2% share in 2005.

This year’s green building is projected to double over the next five years, reaching a 12% to 20% share of the U.S. housing market with $40 billion to $70 billion in sales in 2012.



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