Green building is one of the latest trends to hit the construction market. While conversations about improving energy efficiency are swirling around the industry, the question remains: Is it something buyers really want in new homes?

According to a survey from the CEA (Consumer Electronics Assn.), www.ce.org, interest in installed home technology—including energy-management systems—is high among clients. In particular, nearly 67% of realtors report clients are excited to see technology in homes. While security and home theater systems top the list, newer technologies such as energy-management systems are also found in 16% of new homes today.

And that number is likely only going to grow, as more than 400 builders have pledged to develop the next generation of Energy Star qualified Homes in 2012. According to the U.S. EPA (U.S. Environmental Protection Agency), www.epa.gov, Washington, D.C., leading builders across the country are committed to meeting updated and more rigorous Energy Star standards for new homes in 2012.

New requirements will mean homes need to be at least 15% more efficient than homes built to the 2009 Intl. Energy Conservation Code, and will also require a total energy-efficiency improvement of up to 30% compared to typical new homes.

Some additional measures will include featuring a high-efficiency HVAC (heating, ventilation, and air conditioning) system and Energy Star lighting and appliances to help reduce monthly bills.

For homebuilders that are looking to give buyers a more technologically advanced home and energy-efficiency features, lighting controls, smart appliances, and temperature controls could be a good place to start.

Today’s buyer is more tech savvy than ever and is looking for a home with advanced technologies to both reduce energy costs as well as improve quality of living. As a builder, are you giving buyers homes with energy-efficient features and home technologies?

More than 400 builders have already committed to building more energy-efficient homes in 2012. Have you?