Hang in there, Ed. The exact same thing was happening 25 years ago when I was building my log home. I've built many since then, still live in one, but it was next to impossible to get a construction loan up until about 10 years ago. After some time, one smart lender saw the opportunity to grab the nich and decided to go "log" only, buddied up with one of the log companies with that idea and away they went. The other lenders saw they were losing business and simply followed. I think smart lenders know they need a nich in their market, and I think one of the top ones will see they need to start the new trend of lending green very soon. In fact, I wouldn't doubt they're working on it as we write, just haven't gotten their numbers together in order to give it the go-ahead. Red Tape. Hope it's soon enough for you. Good Luck.
As a Realtor I am just getting into the Green development "trend". I certainly do not believe it is a trend by definition. It has been a growing buzz word in our neighborhood Northern Liberties and has taken root in areas of Fishtown as well as other parts of our city.
Your question, "Why do most lenders not recognize "Green"..." Well, I think in my Philadelphia real estate market it is because there are too few green homes and appraisers as well as consumers and realtors do not speak green.
You seem like a forward thinking guy. Pehaps we can stay in touch. I am interested in learning to speak more fluent green. Perhaps we can help influence our sphere of influence by sharing what we've learned.
I was speaking to a group of green developers the other day. They are trying to build low cost green homes. My contribution to our meeting was more about educating the consumer about the value of environmentally conscious homes. Most home buyers are fixated on the price of a home when they buy it and do not even take into consideration the cost of running that home. We have to show the consumer the cost benefit of green energy efficient homes and the more educated the consumer, the greater demands for their investment to be honored by our industry associates such as appraisers and insurance providers.
An educated consumer is a powerful tihing!
Carson , I agree with getting Green Data on the MLS ! My problem is I have only Certified Green Home for sale in the entire county --someone has to be the pioneer ! Also , I'm a custom homebuilder , so most Green / Energy Star Homes I build are for Clients & never go on MLS . Keepin' it Green !
Ed, you are right, there is a lot of talk about going green, saving the planet and doing the right thing. Nice idea but I really don't care. Show me the money!
As I have called on FLA green builders and green community planners they are all engaged in green speak so they can entertain like minded green speakers. What I want are real numbers that support the suggested additonal value these homes possess so these values can be coveyed to a home buyer in terms that make a tangible difference in their lives....how much money will I save! FLA Green speak experts, in my opinion, use evasive treminolog to keep the consumer from obtaining the data they need or they are building a legal defense.
Here is what the consumer needs!
How much will this home save me monthly? Find a way to answer this question even if you need to ask prequailifying questions such as what do you live in today and what does this cost you monthly, how many in your family, get some lifestyle stuff. PUT A "GREEN SAVINGS" CALCULATOR ON YOUR WEB SITE!
I can calculate the utility cost of a typical 1970 home with 1500 SF. and adjust for the saving with double pane windows, and R35 ceiling insulation, wall insulation, thermal doors and awnings, and the appliances. I can even provide a real value based on home location and resident lifestyle. Don't get carried away with the exceptions, this is an example.
However, the FLA greeners I talk with here provide non-comparable information.
If you want my support in promoting the value of greeen homes....give me the data! Perhaps the truth is the data indicates a 35 year payback, and a 10 year life expectancy. I don't believe this is true, but when the needed data is obscured, the wise skeptic must assume the hidden to be true.
Give the folks who are working with home buyers and sellers the data they need. We are more than capable of showcasing these benefits and the tangible value they represent. Again, the ONLY information I am interested in is, what's the cost, when is the break even, what's the life expectancy! Simple questions that when not answered leaves the consumer with no alternative but to take the same position as the banks at this time...NO VALUE!
To me, the most interesting project to-date is the one led by an EcoBroker agent in Atlanta. I'm actually surprised this has not gotten more attention. Here we have data that shows green homes are closing closer to their list price and in a lot less time! http://greentothescene.wordpress.com/2009/04/19/green-home-sales/
Kudos to Carson Matthews and his peers for geting the MLS fields in place, and then slicing the data so consumers, appraisers. builders and Realtors can all benefit from the information!
For those in the Chicago area, I'm part of a team working to bring access to the same sort of green sales data to our area. Stay tuned!
The Somers , I definitely think Green / Energy Star Building is here to stay ! Energy costs will continue to skyrocket and we have to build more Energy Efficient Homes as our Natural Resources are finite ! Energy Costs on existing older housing stock will be come a larger % of overall expenses , which will have to be factored into the purchasing equation .
Bill , I realize change is slow , but the market is rapidly changing to Green Built Homes and the Lenders & Appraisers need to get on board NOW ! The Obama Administration talks the talk now they need to walk the walk and find solutions , if they really want builders building Green Homes ! Keepin' it Green !