Research published by UK law firm Shakespeare Martineau reveals that green homes will have a significant influence on the UK reaching its net zero 2050 targets, but unless homeowners are happy to live in them, there will be little commercial benefit for housebuilders to construct them.

In order to understand the opinions, knowledge and demands of those in the market to purchase a new home – having either recently purchased, or looking to purchase a property in the next 12 months, Shakespeare Martineau asked 500 first time buyers and ‘second steppers’ whether they were likely to purchase a green home, which green features they were willing to pay more for and their reasons for choosing – or not choosing – a green home.

Their research shows that nearly all of the green homes features become more important the older you get. For example, energy efficiency was most important to almost 70% of respondents aged 45+.

But when they compared the most important features vs the least important features by age they saw a generational divide in smart technology. Only the youngest (18-24) respondents surveyed felt that smart features were a top three feature.

The research found that 77% of buyers are likely to consider purchasing a green home for their next property, but findings also revealed the barriers to the development of more green homes, such as:

  • Planning needs to be simplified
  • Increase in investment of technical expertise such as heat pump installers
  • Increase heat pump production
  • Update class exemptions for electricity licences to include smaller community energy projects
  • Improved and preferential finance rates for SMEs building green homes
  • Improve existing energy infrastructure.

This paper also looks into the many influencers to attitude towards green homes, such as age, class and gender.

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