MORTGAGE INDUSTRY IS WORST
There are special “energy efficient” mortgages out there, in theory. This link will give you some background information about these programs (http://resnet.us/mortgages). Also you could read my past posts called “Energy Efficient Mortgages”. It is a five part post that details out the challenges and products out there. The links in those posts are out of date, but the information in the post is still fairly current.
My frustration as a green builder, is I still have not found anyone willing to underwrite these mortgages. An even bigger problem, is obtaining construction loans, period. If new green home construction received construction loan backing similar to the SBA does for small business, I believe you would see a boom in green building activity. Optionally, we need is a single-close “green” mortgage product offered by the FHA or Fannie. My belief is that construction loans are a major problem for all builders and would be a major carrot for builder to change over their practices.
What is the fallout of all this? If the appraisal comes in low, the buyer automatically thinks they are paying too much and that is hard to argue with. Unless the consumer can make up the difference with a larger down payment (unlikely), the appraisal MUST support the cost of the project. Because Amaris approaches green building from a price performance perspective, we have been able to by-pass this problem, but it has been challenging. If we were to ignore the value equation and just follow green specifications blindly, we wouldn’t be building any “green” homes.