Energy Alternatives Are Capturing The American Homeowner's Fancy Like Never Before

 @MeaganKaym.clark@ibtimes.com on March 11 2014 10:37 AM
renewable
The majority of American homeowners support renewable energy, even if they aren't buying it. Clean Edge/ SolarCity

Most U.S. homeowners support renewable energy and want more options in clean energy products and electricity supply, according to a national poll paid for by Clean Edge Inc. and SolarCity.

National polling firm Zogby Analytics conducted the poll online in January, surveying about 1,400 homeowners across the U.S.

renewable No matter their age or race, region of the country, or other characteristics, Americans across the board—city-dwellers and suburbanites, professionals and part-timers, high- and low-income—said that renewable energy is important to the country’s future.  Clean Edge/ SolarCity

Eighty-eight percent of the homeowners said they support renewable energy. Sixty-nine percent said they want more choices in accessing and purchasing electricity, and 73 percent said they would welcome an inexpensive and reliable form of energy provided by someone other than their current utility. Three out of four respondents, particularly those identifying as Republican, conservative, middle aged or elderly, believe utilities should not be allowed to block individuals from installing solar power or other onsite systems.

"Other surveys have looked at general green-consumer activity, but ours is among the first to focus on U.S. homeowners - a group that makes the majority of clean-energy residential purchases," Ron Pernick, Clean Edge managing director, said in a statement Monday.

More than half (62 percent) said they want solar power and half said they want backup power for their homes. The two top reasons listed for considering solar were zero up-front costs and ongoing cost savings.

whybackuppower Fifty percent of the respondents said they want back up power.  Clean Edge/ SolarCity

If the respondents accurately represent the country, there could soon be a boom in the solar industry. Currently in the U.S, there are more than 75 million owner-occupied housing units but fewer than 500,000 solar photovoltaic installations.

solarpowerwhy The survey shows a demand for solar power.  Clean Edge/ SolarCity

The survey also shows homeowners are increasingly considering the environment in purchasing decisions. 

environmentdecisions Those environmental considerations are increasing. Nationwide, more than half of homeowners (54 percent) say they are more likely to make such considerations today than they were three years ago.  Clean Edge/ SolarCity

environmentdecisions2 While homeowners say they care about the environment, economics drive most purchasing decisions. Respondents cite zero up-front costs, saving money, and controlling energy costs, as the top three reasons for considering solar power.  Clean Edge/ SolarCity

According to the survey, the most popular planned clean energy purchases this year will be LED light bulbs (31 percent of homeowners), followed by smart thermostats, double-  and triple-pane windows, hybrid cars and Energy Star-rated hot water heaters.

Clean Edge and SolarCity plan to release a comparable survey annually. 

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