CHERRY HILL, N.J. and PORTLAND, Maine, April 22, 2011 /PRNewswire/ -- According to a TD Bank poll on consumers' awareness and perceptions of "green" or sustainable buildings, nearly three quarters of respondents think green buildings have at least some impact on the environment, but only one-third of consumers have any knowledge of sustainable buildings in their local area. The poll by TD Bank, America's Most Convenient Bank®, also revealed that 88 percent of respondents feel responsibility to leave a better planet, but only 37 percent indicated they have actually chosen a business because of its environmental products, services, or policies.
TD Bank surveyed 1,510 consumers within major metro markets in its Maine to Florida footprint, including Boston, New York, Philadelphia, Washington, D.C., and Miami. The poll sought to discover consumers' knowledge of green or sustainable buildings in their area, and if they believe these structures have a positive impact on the environment and on the health of the buildings' inhabitants.
"Awareness of green buildings is low with about one-third of consumers being aware of green buildings in their communities," says Jacquelynn Henke, Real Estate Green Strategy Officer, TD Bank. "Consumers do believe these buildings are good for the environment and for their own health, but businesses must do a better job of communicating to their customers and the communities they serve about the development of environment-friendly buildings."
The survey also sought to understand consumers' attitudes on being green and their support of businesses that offer green products and services and operate in environmentally friendly ways.
Good for the Earth and for Business
According to survey results, being green can enhance a business' image. Eighty-two percent of respondents believe green businesses care more about the community and nearly three-quarters of consumers polled believe these businesses care more about their customers. Millenials, ages 18 to 34, are more likely to support green businesses than their older peers (49 percent versus 36 percent for 35 to 54-year-olds, and 27 percent for those at age 55 and above). When prompted to select the kinds of green businesses they have supported, Millenials have taken their business to:
- Grocery stores (29%)
- Coffee shops (20%)
- Retailers, e.g. apparel, electronics, furniture, etc. (19%)
- Drug stores (14%)
- Utilities (13%)
- Banks (8%)
Responsibility for Green Building Development
When asked to rank who is responsible for promoting and ensuring the development of green buildings, seven out of 10 respondents believe it is the government's responsibility to do so. This ranking was followed by:
- Large corporations (63%)
- Individual consumers (29%)
- Non-profit organizations (22%)
- Small or medium-sized businesses (16%)
Other Key Findings From the Survey Include:
- According to the survey, there is a generation gap almost across the board on the topics of green buildings and the environment. Millenials are more aware of green buildings in their communities than older generations (49 percent), including people between the ages 33 and 54 (32 percent), and those 55 years of age and older (25 percent).
- Hospitals (76 percent) and schools (75 percent) are the buildings most consumers believe should be green – more than homes, grocery stores, banks offices, and retailers.
- Philadelphians are more likely to view green buildings as a public relations stunt or "gimmicky" (18 percent), but no one in Washington, D.C. shares that view.
- Of the metro markets, New Yorkers are least likely to view native landscaping (28 percent) and improved indoor air quality (34 percent) as elements of a green building. This is perhaps due to the city's older structures and "concrete jungle" nickname.
Note: Please contact us for additional data points and specifics from each metro market.
The study was conducted among consumers in the Boston, Miami, New York, Philadelphia, and Washington, D.C. metro areas from March 31, 2011 to April 5, 2011. TD Bank polled 1,510 consumers: 305 in Metro Boston, 301 in Metro New York, 302 in Metro Philadelphia, 307 in Metro Washington, D.C., and 295 in Metro Miami. The sample size of 1,510 has a margin of error of +/- 2.4%.
About Angus Reid Public Opinion
Angus Reid Public Opinion is the Public Affairs practice of Vision Critical -- a global research company. Vision Critical is a leader in the use of the Internet and rich media technology to collect high-quality, in-depth insights for a wide array of clients.
About TD Bank, America's Most Convenient Bank®
TD Bank, America's Most Convenient Bank, is one of the 10 largest banks in the United States, providing customers with a full range of financial products and services at more than 1,250 convenient locations from Maine to Florida. On September 30, 2010, The South Financial Group, Inc. was acquired by TD Bank Group, and its subsidiary Carolina First Bank merged with TD Bank. Carolina First Bank will continue to operate under the trade names Carolina First Bank in North and South Carolina and Mercantile Bank in Florida until conversion and rebranding in June 2011. TD Bank is headquartered in Cherry Hill, N.J., and Portland, Maine. Carolina First Bank and Mercantile Bank are trade names of TD Bank, N.A. For more information, visit www.tdbank.com. TD Bank, America's Most Convenient Bank, is a member of TD Bank Group and a subsidiary of The Toronto-Dominion Bank of Toronto, Canada, a top 10 financial services company in North America and one of the few banks in the world rated Aaa by Moody's. The Toronto-Dominion Bank trades on the New York and Toronto stock exchanges under the ticker symbol "TD." To learn more, visit www.td.com.
SOURCE TD Bank