Stories | October 23, 2018

Cost of greener homes too high, Europe tells ING survey

Many wouldn’t pay to reduce environmental impacts of living in their home; some say they do enough already.

Living more sustainably might be important but “going green” costs too much for many in Europe, according to an ING International Survey of nearly 15,000 people in 15 countries.

Around half agree they could do more to reduce the environmental impact of living in their homes. However, this typically takes a back seat to affordability – suggesting that assistance from authorities or other organisations, such as banks, could be popular.

Read the full report, ING International Survey Homes and Mortgages – Sustainable Homes 2018, to learn more.

Seven in ten (70%) across 13 countries in Europe tell us they try to keep their personal impact on the environment low. Eight in ten (78%) agree that “when we work together, we can reduce our impact on the environment”.

“I could do more, but …”
And more than half (55%) agree they could do more. When Europeans who reply that they could do more are asked why they do not, people point to a lack of funds or knowledge as key reasons.

Eighty-two percent feel subsidising energy-efficient appliances would be a good thing. But large shares wouldn't want to contribute more than a week's earnings themselves for this.

A further complicating factor is that people are divided on whether living in their own specific home has a significant impact on the environment. Just 30% agree, and 34% “neither agree nor disagree” with this statement. Of the 31% who disagree, 18% also argue that they’ve already reduced their homes’ impact.

About half (51%) have already made physical changes to their home to reduce its environmental impact.

“I just can’t afford it”
Many say they would not or could not pay anything towards the cost of reducing the environmental impact of their home. When respondents check efficiency features and bills, it’s primarily to be sure they can afford them, with environmental impact once again a lower priority.

An earlier report, ING International Survey Homes and Mortgages - Home Costs and Prices 2018, underlines affordability of homes generally as a problem. More than half (57%) in Europe describe housing in their local area as expensive, for example.

eZonomics team
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This article is related to the ING International Survey:

Homes and Mortgages 2018 - Sustainable Homes

Homes and Mortgages 2018 - Sustainable Homes

October 23, 2018

Sustainable living is an issue for our time. The ING International Survey, which polls nearly 15,000 across Europe, the USA and Australia, can reveal that high shares try to keep their personal impact on the environment...