Homebuyers Say They'd Pay $50,000 More for a Home with All Gas Appliances, New Study Finds

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July 13, 2016


90 Percent of New and Future Homeowners Prefer Natural Gas

PORTLAND,Ore.—Homebuyers overwhelmingly prefer natural gas versus electricity to heat their homes and cook their food, and are willing to pay more for a home equipped with all natural gas appliances, according to a new study conducted by Market Strategies International. .

"When buying a home, our research finds that the vast majority of homebuyers will not compromise when it comes to having natural gas service," said Ron Newheiser, senior director of research and consulting for Market Strategies.

During February and March 2016, Market Strategies surveyed a representative sample of consumers who recently bought or planned to buy single-family detached homes in NW Natural's service territory in Portland, Salem and Vancouver to gauge the value they place on natural gas service and amenities. For more details regarding the survey, visit nwnatural.com.

The study found strong preference for natural gas versus electric service and equipment at all home values, but particularly as the price of the home increases.

"What this research tells us is that homebuyers clearly prefer natural gas over electricity and are willing to pay a premium for a home with all natural gas appliances," said Tamy Linver, Senior Director, Strategic Planning and Market Intelligence. "And the more that people invest in a home, the more they want premium natural gas amenities."

Key findings of the research include the following:

  • Natural gas is important. Nearly 9 of 10 (87 percent) people who recently bought or plan to buy a house ranked having a home with natural gas service as "important" to them.
  • Natural gas is affordable. The top reasons homebuyers prefer natural gas are affordability and better for cooking, followed by heats better and is a more efficient source of energy.
  • 9 of 10 pick the gas home. Given the choice between two otherwise identical single-family homes offered at the same selling price, 9 of 10 said they would pick the home with all natural gas appliances versus the home with all electric equipment.
  • 9 of 10 would pay $50,000 more. 88 percent of homebuyers would choose the all-natural gas home -- even if they had to pay $50,000 more for it than for a comparably outfitted, all-electric home at an average price of $381,000.
  • The higher the home price, the higher the preference for gas. At home values of $600,000 or more, nearly all (96 percent) homebuyers said they would spend an extra $50,000 on a home with premium natural gas amenities.

Shown the results of the study, builders said the findings matched their experience. "All of the clients I have worked with prefer natural gas versus electric heat for the comfort of their home, and hands down prefer to cook with gas," said Nancy Haskin, custom homes regional director for Pahlisch Homes.

For more details regarding the survey commissioned by NW Natural, nwnatural.com

AboutNW Natural

NW Natural (NYSE:NWN) is headquartered in Portland, Ore., and provides natural gas service to about 718,000 residential, commercial and industrial customers in Oregon and Southwest Washington. It is the largest independent natural gas utility in the Pacific Northwest. Additional information is available at nwnatural.com.

About Market Strategies International

Market Strategies International is a market research consultancy and leader in the field of energy market research, working with 20 of the top 30 regulated electric utilities (by number of customers). Founded in 1989, Market Strategies is one of the largest market research firms in the world, with offices in the US, Canada and China, and additional industry expertise in consumer & retail, financial services, healthcare, technology and telecommunications. Read Market Strategies' blog at FreshMR, and follow Market Strategies on Facebook, Twitter and LinkedIn.

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