Spray foam insulation: Does it make a difference on my utility bill, or more extremely, does it add dollars to my house's market value?
June 24th, 2024 4:41 AM

"Energy Efficient Items" is actually a line item on the Sales Comparison Approach grid -- the form generally used by appraisers to perform residential appraisals. "Energy Efficient Items" is down on the list, in the comparison grid, which means it's certainly not prioritized as high as "timing of sale," "location," "site size," etc...; but it IS a factor. One of the significant ways energy can be made more efficient in a house is with the use of better insulation, and spray foam insulation shows superior efficiencies over other insulation options, and that savings should enter the calculations of any would-be buyer trying to decide what a fair house price should be. Likewise, it should enter the calculus of any appraiser who is comparing recent comparables in a market to also reach a market value conclusion.

Savings in Annual Utility Expenses
Energy Efficiency: Spray foam insulation is highly effective at reducing energy consumption due to its excellent sealing properties. It minimizes air leaks more effectively than traditional insulation materials like fiberglass or cellulose. By creating an airtight seal, spray foam insulation reduces the workload on heating and cooling systems, leading to lower energy bills.

Average Savings:
Percentage Reduction: On average, homes with spray foam insulation can save between 20% to 50% on heating and cooling costs annually .
Cost Example: For a typical U.S. household spending about $2,000 annually on energy, this could translate to savings of $400 to $1,000 per year .
Case Studies: Specific case studies have shown substantial savings. For instance, a home in a moderate climate zone that installed spray foam insulation reported a reduction in energy consumption by approximately 30%, leading to significant yearly savings on utility bills .

Increase in Residential Real Estate Market Value
Market Perception: Homes with spray foam insulation are often perceived as more energy-efficient and environmentally friendly, which can be a selling point for eco-conscious buyers. Energy-efficient homes tend to have a higher market value due to lower operational costs and increased comfort.

Return on Investment (ROI):
Enhanced Home Value: Studies and real estate reports indicate that energy-efficient homes, including those with spray foam insulation, can see a market value increase of 2% to 6% .
ROI Calculation: If the average home price is $300,000, this could mean an increase in market value by $6,000 to $18,000. Given the upfront cost of spray foam insulation (which can range from $2,000 to $6,000 for an average-sized home), the investment often pays for itself through both energy savings and increased home value.
Buyer Preference: According to a survey by the National Association of Home Builders (NAHB), energy efficiency is a top priority for homebuyers. Features like spray foam insulation that contribute to energy efficiency can make a property more attractive and potentially lead to quicker sales at higher prices .

U.S. Department of Energy: "Insulation: Understanding the Basics". Accessed 2023.
Energy Star: "Benefits of Insulation". Accessed 2023.
Home Energy Magazine: "Savings with Spray Foam Insulation". Issue May/June 2022.
Building Science Corporation: "Case Study: Energy Savings with Spray Foam Insulation". 2021.
Appraisal Institute: "The Impact of Energy Efficient Home Features on Market Value". 2020.
Zillow: "Energy Efficiency and Home Values". 2022.
National Association of Home Builders (NAHB): "What Home Buyers Really Want". 2023.
In summary, spray foam insulation can significantly reduce annual utility expenses through improved energy efficiency and can also enhance the market value of residential properties, making it a worthwhile investment for homeowners.

Posted by Troy Sifford on June 24th, 2024 4:41 AMPost a Comment

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