Skip to content

Instagram vs Reality: Homeowners Shun Insta-friendly Features for Eco-mod Con

  • New homeowners are knocking down the door for eco-friendly features in 2023 property searches
  • Tall ceilings and ornate fireplaces are dumped for triple glazing and good insulation
  • FirstPort property management experts reveal buyers would pay £16,130 extra for green property features

Previous property must-haves like tall ceilings and ornate fireplaces are out, with homeowners favouring eco-friendly features in 2023. A new poll of 2,000 UK adults(1) has found Instagrammable aesthetics are being shunned for the likes of double or triple glazing (a must-have for 70% of house hunters) or good insulation (61%) as people double down on eco and cost efficiency this year.

The poll, from property management experts, FirstPort, revealed the top 10 features this year’s homeowners are knocking down the door for: 

  1. Double or triple glazing (70%) 
  2. Good insulation (61%) 
  3. Good sized rooms (53%) 
  4. A big garden (50%) 
  5. An economical central heating system (46%) 
  6. A private driveway, or dedicated parking (38%) 
  7. Renewable energy system (e.g. solar panels, heat pump) (37%) 
  8. En-suite bathroom (36%) 
  9. Large windows / good daylight (34%) 
  10. A good energy efficiency rating (34%) 

The survey found what works for the ‘gram doesn’t always translate into reality, with previously popular period features like sash windows (3%), ornate fireplaces (13%) and tall ceilings (15%) turning up at the bottom of the property pile. 

What’s more, while 96% of those surveyed say the cost-of-living situation has changed what they’d look for in a home, buyers are prepared to stump up the cash for longer-term gain. House hunters would be willing to pay on average £16,130 to bag a greener property with features such as energy efficient light fixtures (willing to pay an average of £894 extra) and renewable energy sources (£2,038). 

How much house hunters would be willing to pay for additional green features: 

  •        Energy efficient lighting: £894
  •        Renewable energy source: £2,038
  •        Smart heating: £1,236
  •        Well-insulated walls: £1,633
  •        A good EPC rating: £1,429
  •        Access to an EV charging point: £1,053
  •        A newly fitted boiler: £1,736
  •        Newly fitted double / triple glazed windows / doors: £2,089

Homeowners need to consider carefully their property must-haves, as its survey revealed 68% of people regret not prioritising green features the last time they moved. 

Christian Phipps, Sustainability Manager, at FirstPort said: 

“This research shows just how important sustainable living is and will continue to be going forward. Especially with the increased cost of energy, the interest we’ve had from customers for energy efficient additions, such as solar panels, has skyrocketed. 

I would like to think that in the future all homes will have environmentally friendly features.

“Whilst we recognise there’s still a way to go before we get there, at FirstPort we are absolutely committed to working with our residents and local communities to look at where we can positively contribute to the environment in and around the homes we manage.”

(1) A survey, carried out by 3Gem, of 2,000 UK homeowners and renters (private only) from the 24th February – 28th February 2023