August 17, 2020

5 Questions to Ask Before You Buy a Green Home

After determining what eco-friendly options are most important in your house hunt, the next step is consulting with your team to find the right home. Your lender and real estate agent can help you find the best mortgage solution and home to meet your green needs.

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What to ask your lender

Here are two questions to bring up with your lender if you’re considering investing in an energy efficient home:

How much can I afford? This will always be the first question you ask when you decide to buy a home. Your credit, mortgage rates and home-related costs all play a role in determining what you can afford.

What are my options for financing an energy efficient home? It’s very important to find a mortgage option that best fits your financial needs. If you’re buying an eco-friendly home, you may be able to qualify for a GreenCHOICE Mortgage®, which gives you the flexibility to purchase your home and finance future energy and water efficiency improvements or repairs.

What to ask your agent

When you’re ready to speak with a real estate agent, here are some questions to get you started on the right foot.

What is your experience with energy efficient homes? Green housing is a specific type of build, so it's helpful to work with a housing professional who has specific expertise or credentials. Examples of a green certification include the National Association of Realtor’s Green Designation and the LEED Green Associate certification.

How much are the home’s utilities? As energy consumption rises, so does the cost of utilities. Your real estate agent should be able to help you understand the current energy usage of the home you’re interested in purchasing. Learning about the current owner’s expenses will tell you a lot about how much green upgrades could really save you.

How does the energy efficiency of this home affect its potential resale value? Freddie Mac research found that homes with energy efficiency ratings sold for 2.7% more on average compared to homes without those ratings. While the idea of reselling may be far from your mind, it could influence your buying decision if you're trying to choose between two or more homes.

To learn more about buying green, building the right team and becoming a homeowner, visit My Home by Freddie Mac®.