Australian households are faced with rising energy costs and increasing occurrences of extreme weather events, such as hail storms and heat waves, due to the effect of climate change and influence of energy policies. Consequently, there has been increasing effort into designing homes and neighbourhoods that have built-in or retrofitted sustainable features such as solar panels to ensure that households are able to secure their own supply of electricity in times of shortages, as well as save on utility bills. The objective of this paper is to understand people's preferences for characteristics of sustainable neighbourhoods and homes using a case study of 300 residents in Canberra, Australia. Findings from this survey suggest that housing affordability, energy saving designs for good temperature control, neighbourhood safety and cleanliness are the most desirable features of the neighbourhood and home across all socio-economic groups and buying intentions (i.e. investor or owner-occupier). The least preferred features are green facades (e.g. green roofs, green walls, large lawns) and communal bins rather than individual household ones. This information can be used to inform the design of future housing estates or suburb developments that want to pitch towards the ‘green’ consumer market.