9 in 10 Homeowners Made Eco-Friendly Home Improvements Last Year

Upgrades of all sizes popular for both ecological and financial reasons
worker installing new windows

Amid an uptick in home improvement projects during the coronavirus pandemic, many Americans are looking for ways to make their homes more ecologically sustainable, new data shows.

A recent survey from home services platform Angi (formerly Angie's List) shows that almost a quarter of homeowners (24%) spent more than $5,000 on eco-friendly improvements, while 68% made lower-priced upgrades. Notably, 14% of those surveyed said they spent more than $10,000 on greening their homes.

Most popular ecological improvements over the past year

Sustainable home improvement projects found in the survey ranged from eco-friendly construction materials to energy-saving smart devices.

The most commonly-cited projects were:

  1. Sealing or caulking windows (34%)
  2. Improving insulation (30%)
  3. Installing smart thermostats (28%)
  4. Installing low-flow or dual-flow toilets (23%)
  5. Installing Energy Star appliances (23%)

In addition to one-time projects, many homeowners said they've adopted practices that are better for the environment. Nearly half (47%) claimed they now wash their clothes on cold, and more than 30% note switching to more eco-friendlier cleaning products (31%) and improving their recycling habits (39%).

Many of the survey respondents said their motivation for such projects wasn’t just about the environment — it was financial, as well.

Among the survey respondents, 55% said they felt the environment is important, while 50% cited the desire to save money in the long run. In addition, 38% said they wanted to increase their home’s resale value.

Other budget-friendly ways to go green

Data suggests that home improvement projects have grown in popularity during the pandemic. But beyond major renovations, there are other ways you can reduce your energy consumption and save money in the coming year:

  • Downsize to just one vehicle. Fuel for gasoline-powered cars and other transportation is one of the main sources of greenhouse gas. You could cut down on emissions and save money on fuel, insurance and maintenance by getting rid of a second car if you don't really need it.
  • Do a DIY home energy assessment. Instead of paying for a professional service, you can follow the Department of Energy's assessment list on your own to identify energy-saving fixes you can make around the house.
  • Unplug your devices. Unplugging electronics or turning off power strips when they're not in use could reduce your household's energy consumption by 5% to 10%.
  • Switch to cold water. Water heating is responsible for about 90% of the necessary energy for a washing machine, so dropping the temperature for your laundry could make a notable difference. Washing clothes with warm water instead of hot uses about half as much energy, with further reductions through cold water use.
  • Get rid of your old refrigerator. Older refrigerators can cost as much as $300 per year to run. Save money by recycling your second refrigerator or unplugging it when it's not in use.

Methodology: This survey was commissioned by Angi Inc. and conducted online by Pollfish between March 23 and March 24, 2022 and included 1,000 U.S. adult homeowners. The pro sample of 600 U.S. home service professionals was surveyed between March 23 and March 27, 2022.

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