According to a recent survey by Green Builder Media and Imre Communications, homes that are environmentally safe are, in many cases, more valuable than those homes that are traditionally-built as homebuyers are willing to pay a premium for a green-built home.

According to the survey, 51% of the builders said that buyers would pay anywhere from 11% to 25% more for green-built homes. Who is buying environmentally safe homes? The average green homebuyer is between the ages of 33-50, college-educated, and has a fair amount of environmental product knowledge.

What is a green-built home?

Green Builder Media’s website states that “green building means responsible development in natural areas that conserves the environment and improves the well-being of the inhabitants.”

It’s the green components–products with long and efficient life cycles–that make the house more environmentally safe and ultimately economically beneficial for the homebuyer. Green-built homes benefit those living in them and the environment through such things as improved energy efficiency, durability, indoor environment quality, resource management, and general environment appropriateness of the home. A typical green product is made from renewable raw materials or contains recycled components. Green products are missing toxins and pollutants.

“Builders are buying green products because they feel it’s important to both the environment and their businesses. This shift in behavior and purchasing patterns confirms just how significant the green-building movement is,” says Sara Gutterman, CEO of Green Builder Media.

She adds, “As demand increases for green products within both the consumer and trade market, manufacturers will respond by accelerating research and development, which benefits both the environment and homebuyers.”

It is becoming less expensive to build in green style. The heating and cooling cost for green homes are 33% of what they used to be.

Green homes are not only cost savers but really are appreciated and valued by the homebuyer.

The survey also found that occupant satisfaction and comfort are higher than traditional-built homes and green homes are more durable. The maintenance costs and operational costs are less too.

Building a green homes will cost you more, but the cost-savings in the end, equalizes the initial building costs. According to the experts, the average statistic is that is may cost around 2 percent more to build than a traditional home, but the green-built house is worth up to 15 percent more.