Myth Busting-Green Homes Part 1

Real Estate Agent SL3287291

I recently asked the question of Realtors®: In your area is there interest in Energy Efficient Homes, also know as Green Homes?

There were several responses to the question that were very similar and were in fact in line with the most common myth regarding Green Homes.

Myth number 1 is: Building Green Costs More.

I believe this thinking is a carry over from several years ago.

Green technology was expensive and would certainly cause a person to hesitate to spend large amounts of money with a long wait to recoup the benefits of the savings.

For example:

in 1972 a Photovoltaic panel (solar panel) that would produce 1 watt of power cost $74. But the decline in costs over the decades has been astonishing. In mid 2014, a solar panel that produces 1 watt of power cost $.74. That means the technology is 99% cheaper now.

I have written about Babcock Ranch, a new Solar Powered town in Southwest Florida. They have joined with Florida Power and Light to build an Energy Center=Solar Farm. This Energy Center produces 74.5 mega watts of energy, enough to power 19,000 homes plus 6 million square feet of commercial space.

There are enough solar panels in the Energy Center, if placed end to end would stretch from just North of Ft Myers, Florida to Chicago.

In 1972, with a cost of $74 per watt, it would have been prohibitive to build. But at $.74 it is a reasonable solution to decreasing energy costs for residential and commercial use.

Another way to look at the cost vs benefit is seen in this example:

People can install an attic fan to draw out the hot air that collects there and is responsible for adding heat to the home.

You can buy an energy efficient solar attic vent for the home and it will cost you about ten times that of a static plastic vent. The solar attic vent cools down the attic by something close to 10-15% during the summer. This means a reduction in your air conditioning bill that is significant.

There are 2 benefits from this solar fan.

1. Over time it will save you money on your electric bill.

2. It will reduce the work load on the A/C unit and thus adds to the useful life of that unit.

There is also another benefit: it will decrease the need for fuel to create the electricity. This means less air pollution.

FPL is installing 5,000 solar panels that will help power Daytona International Speedway. This will cut and estimated 2200 metric tons of carbon dioxide per year.

To say that Energy Efficiency is too expensive is to not see the current costs and all the additional benefits gained.

John Wiley holds the GREEN designation from the National Association of Realtors®. He is also certified to teach the Green course.

For more information on Green Homes go to: Wiley's Green Home Blog

You can Contact John Wiley at: Contact

Comments (17)

Sally K. & David L. Hanson
EXP Realty 414-525-0563 - Brookfield, WI
WI Real Estate Agents - Luxury - Divorce

  Solar can ge a bad name that has stuck in many people's heads without the benefit of the updated cost information you provided here AND the green savings !

Jan 30, 2018 05:07 AM
John Wiley
Fort Myers, FL
Lee County, FL, ECO Broker, GRI, SRES,GREEN,PSA

So many areas of life are guided by outdated or false information.

The result can and often is a loss of financial benefits.

Sally K. & David L. Hanson thanks for your contribution to the discussion.





























Jan 30, 2018 05:37 AM
Joan Cox
House to Home, Inc. - Denver Real Estate - 720-231-6373 - Denver, CO
Denver Real Estate - Selling One Home at a Time

John, I still run into buyers and sellers that do not want solar panels on the roof and become old, like they did years ago.   

Jan 30, 2018 06:50 AM
John Wiley
Fort Myers, FL
Lee County, FL, ECO Broker, GRI, SRES,GREEN,PSA

Some people still think a flip phone with a rotary dial is the best way to go.

Technology is always changing and we hope it is changing in a positive way.

Joan Cox thanks for your commenting.

Jan 30, 2018 07:38 AM
Gayle Rich-Boxman Fishhawk Lake Real Estate
John L Scott Market Center - Birkenfeld, OR
"Your Local Expert!" 503-755-2905

John, this is great stuff!!! My mom went solar in FL last year I believe. I'll ask her about the attic fan, though. 

I have a green home as a listing here in Oregon, and it's super efficient and beautiful, located along the edge of Fishhawk Creek. 

We almost went for solar, but our power company is the WORST regarding incentives and we really weighed out the cost analysis over the years for the initial expense. Still too much for us to pull the trigger, sadly.

The time will come down the road, tho!


Jan 30, 2018 11:47 AM
John Wiley
Fort Myers, FL
Lee County, FL, ECO Broker, GRI, SRES,GREEN,PSA

Gayle Rich-Boxman Fishhawk Lake Real Estate you are correct that the various power companies can make it difficult.

I have some more installments coming and they will offer suggestions for saving money without going all out green.

Thanks for the comments.

Jan 30, 2018 02:37 PM
Sheri Sperry - MCNE®
Coldwell Banker Realty - Sedona, AZ
(928) 274-7355 ~ YOUR Solutions REALTOR®

Hi John Wiley - probably another  myth is that you have to live in an area that gets lots of sunshine for solar to be effective. With today's efficient systems, I am sure this is also a myth. 

Feb 01, 2018 05:34 AM
John Wiley
Fort Myers, FL
Lee County, FL, ECO Broker, GRI, SRES,GREEN,PSA

Sheri Sperry - MCNE® thanks for contributing to the discussion.

Solar panels have become more efficient and you do not have to live in a sunshine state to reap the benefits.

Feb 01, 2018 01:04 PM
Debbie Reynolds, C21 Platinum Properties
Platinum Properties- (931)771-9070 - Clarksville, TN
The Dedicated Clarksville TN Realtor-(931)320-6730

Interesting information. I only know of 2-3 homes in my whole area that have panels. It just isn't my thing here.

Feb 01, 2018 08:24 PM
John Wiley
Fort Myers, FL
Lee County, FL, ECO Broker, GRI, SRES,GREEN,PSA

Debbie, I think it will take some more time and positive education before we see the value of solar.

Thanks for the comment.

Feb 02, 2018 03:11 AM
Gabe Sanders
Real Estate of Florida specializing in Martin County Residential Homes, Condos and Land Sales - Stuart, FL
Stuart Florida Real Estate

Good morning John.  The energy efficient green revolution is just beginning.  

Feb 02, 2018 05:52 AM
John Wiley
Fort Myers, FL
Lee County, FL, ECO Broker, GRI, SRES,GREEN,PSA

Hi Gabe. I agree. As myths are busted and energy savings is shown, the consumer will want to utilize the technology.

Thanks for your contribution.

Feb 02, 2018 04:50 PM
Jon Zolsky, Daytona Beach, FL
Daytona Condo Realty, 386-405-4408 - Daytona Beach, FL
Buy Daytona condos for heavenly good prices

Interesting and a bit surprising. As far as I know even with the lower cost of solar panels, they make more sense in FLorida for commercial properties, than for residential cost-wise, and this is because a commercial kilowatt is more expensive for commercial properties. However, solar panels are not manufactured in USA, they are coming from China, and with Trump setting barriers, we will see a sharp increase in cost.

Feb 03, 2018 07:21 AM
Sharon Tara
Sharon Tara Transformations - Portsmouth, NH
New Hampshire Home Stager

Very informative John. Great idea for a series.

Feb 13, 2018 01:59 PM
John Wiley
Fort Myers, FL
Lee County, FL, ECO Broker, GRI, SRES,GREEN,PSA

Tara, thanks for the comment. The technology is changing rapidly. There are several companies in the U.S. manufacturing solar panels.

FPL has just announced they are adding battery storage to conserve energy and this is bringing down the costs for electricity.

Feb 13, 2018 07:32 PM
Grant Schneider
Performance Development Strategies - Armonk, NY
Your Coach Helping You Create Successful Outcomes

Good afternoon John - my house in Port St Lucie has all energy saving. I use very little power.

Apr 03, 2018 09:59 AM
John Wiley
Fort Myers, FL
Lee County, FL, ECO Broker, GRI, SRES,GREEN,PSA

Grant, many people are not aware that energy efficient homes also hold their value which is another benefit.

Thanks for commenting.

Apr 03, 2018 04:53 PM