The consumer market for green products is much bigger than previously thought, research for Home Retail-owned DIY chain Homebase has found.

It had previously been estimated that about 7% of consumers – those who were already interested in environmental issues – were keen to undertake green projects.

However the Homebase research - part of its 21st Century Living project in partnership with the Eden Project and corporate responsibility consultancy Acona – revealed comprehensive consumer interest.

The research, which involved 100 representative households challenged to reduce their environmental impact over a 12-month period, showed that saving money is one of the strongest motivators of action and there is a resulting “mass market opportunity” for retailers.

It found that personal advice is very important to consumers and that there is an opportunity for innovation in products and services.

Home Retail Group head of corporate responsibility Rosi Watson said: “It has shown us that, given the right information, everyone will invest in greener homes regardless of their background and values.

“It has given us a better understanding of what customers want and need when it comes to saving energy and reducing their waste, and we are now developing products and services to meet these needs.”