Green Building Statistics: Demand is High, Design Experience is Low

While it’s true that statistics don’t always tell the whole story, some recent figures from XL and NAHB have important risk management implications for green building industry stakeholders.

We’ll be signing off today for the holiday weekend, but before we do that, I want to point out a couple of interesting green building statistics: one group collected by NAHB and the other which was mentioned during yesterday’s Green Building Initiative webinar discussing insurance and surety issues for green construction projects. During the webinar, one of the panelists noted that only 20 percent of his company’s (XL Specialty Insurance) insured design professionals consider themselves “very experienced” in green design- obviously a percentage to which XL is paying close attention in the context of green risk management.

On a different track, the National Association of Home Builders recently released figures from a survey of multi-family builders and developers. While 74 percent of respondents said that their buyers and renters are willing to pay more for green amenities, the median additional amount that they’re willing to pay is just 2 percent.

Some other stats of note: 89 percent of respondents (again, multi-family builders and developers, nationwide) said they are currently installing energy-efficient appliances and lighting in their projects, 79 percent are installing low-E windows, 64 percent are incorporating recycled materials, and 50 percent are installing greater insulation than required by local code (that figure jumps to 70 percent among respondents based on the West Coast).

From a risk management perspective, as more developers specify these- and other types- of green building materials, products, and systems, design professionals must continue to increase their working knowledge of those installations in order to better shield themselves from potential liability.

Have a great Labor Day and we’ll be back with you next Tuesday!

About Stephen Del Percio

Stephen Del Percio has written for gbNYC+ since 2006 and currently serves as in-house counsel for one of the world's largest engineering, construction, and technical services companies. He earned a B.Eng. from Columbia, his J.D. at William & Mary, and lives in New York City with his wife and daughter. You can follow Stephen on Twitter, email him at, or join gbNYC on Facebook to continue the conversation.

about gbNYC

gbNYC is a multi-disciplinary consulting and real estate services firm. In addition to representing office tenants and commercial buyers in leasing and acquisitions, we also provide innovative consulting solutions from a unique, green building perspective. We advise on green building financial incentives, comment on proposed green building marketing strategies, author white papers, treatises, and market analyses, organize seminars on the LEED process and professional accreditation, and provide advice and analysis on green building risk management and the overall state of green real estate, leasing, and construction, in New York City and beyond.

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2 Responses to Green Building Statistics: Demand is High, Design Experience is Low

  1. RLongert Tuesday, September 2, 2008 at 5:20 pm #

    These numbers are very interesting, and show that we have a long way to go in terms of bringing green building into the mainstream.

    Buildings are the largest emitters of greenhouse gas emissions, accounting for nearly 48 percent of the greenhouse gases related to electricity production nationally, according to my client, The American Institute of Architects.

    Check out a video the AIA put together on the topic here –


  1. Control4 to Participate in 2020 Alton Green Home Project | Caster Communications - Wednesday, November 14, 2012

    [...] of Home Builders, released figures from a survey of multi-family builders and developers, where 74% of respondents said that their buyers and renters are willing to pay more for green [...]

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