Energy efficiency more than just a fad, according to new reports

Real estate analysts across the country are noticing a rising trend in the number of homeowners looking to take advantage of energy efficiency to make their homes more cost-efficient.

A report from the the U.S. Energy Information Administration (EIA) released recently shows that the number of homeowners who have voluntarily sought out Energy Star Homes has increased markedly.

The Energy Star program is a grading system sponsored by the Department of Energy which marks homes and appliances based upon their positive environmental impact. In the past, such properties were marketed as an added benefit to a property to homeowners who otherwise wouldn't seek the label out. Now, more than 26 percent of all homes constructed nationwide are done so under the guidelines of Energy Star at the request of the homeowner.

Further evidence of the nation's change in attitude toward environmentally friendly housing comes with the up-tick in prefabricated homes. According to a story in the Sacramento Bee, Californians across the northern part of the state have purchased these kinds of properties in droves.

A big reason attributed to the popularity of these kinds of houses is that the construction process of these properties reduces not only labor costs, but also the waste and emissions associated with traditional home assembly.

The National Association of Home Builders has reported over recent months that consumer confidence in purchasing new properties has been strong throughout 2012, and that the trend of energy efficient new housing will only continue into 2013.

Homeowners who are interested in purchasing a new property because of its energy efficiency should conduct a home inspection to guarantee the house is truly environmentally friendly. Older homes can benefit from an energy audit which can evaluate where changes can be made to decrease monthly utility costs.