How Property Managers Can Go Green for a Competitive EdgeDecember 1, 2013
Green property management is good for both managers and residents alike.
A lower carbon footprint, a healthier environment, energy and water conservation, and saving money are just some of the benefits of green property management practices. One main benefit that green property managers enjoy is competitive advantage. Property managers can differentiate their properties from competitors with green practices.
The Green Difference
Properties with energy and water saving appliances may have the same monthly rental fee as surrounding properties but save tenants money with lower utility bills. Health-minded, environmentally-conscious renters will chose a less toxic indoor environment that adheres to practices such as low-VOC paint and healthier outdoor environments that utilize an integrated pest management system rather than one managed with pesticides and chemicals. A rental community with green areas such as bike paths and trails, and green community practices such as a recycling program or a green advisory council attracts tenants over neighboring properties that lack these options.
Promoting green practices in rental advertising creates a competitive advantage and makes green properties stand out from competitors. Some ways property managers can go green and create a competitive advantage include offering green moving options to tenants, implementing an organized recycling program and installing energy saving appliances and water saving toilets and showers. The American Apartment Owners Association not only provides a host of helpful services such as tenant screening but also offers a green mission statement to assist landlords and property managers who want to convert to greener practices. They also provide resources and information about environmentally-friendly practices and vendors.
Green Moving Options
Property managers can help tenants green their move-in by offering responsible move-in and moving services such as Zipp Go, Rentacrate and JuggleBox Moving. Renters using cardboard packing boxes contribute to the waste stream of recyclable materials that end up in landfills each year, of which paper makes up more than 70 million tons. A green option for moving is using reusable packing containers such as plastic cartons. Property managers who provide new tenants with the option of renting moving containers instead of using cardboard boxes create a double benefit: the convenience of not having to dispose of cardboard boxes after a move and a less environmentally damaging move.
Providing tenants with an easy, efficient way to recycle can be as simple as contacting the local waste management company to arrange for recycling containers. If your community doesn’t have curbside recycling, your local or state recycling coalition or association is a resource for how to offer recycling options to your tenants.
Make sure recycling containers are large enough for the number of residents and put them in convenient locations. Arrange for regular pickup so recycling containers and areas stay neat and organized without overflow. Post clear, attractive signage to instruct people about the importance of recycling and how to prepare materials for collection.
Energy Efficient Appliances and Plumbing
Installing energy efficient appliances and plumbing features saves resources and money and provides competitive advantage by attracting tenants who are eco-conscious and want to save money on utilities. The return on investment of efficient toilets, faucets and showers is well worth it, as the Port Authority of New York and New Jersey and the Veterans Affairs Hospital in Portland, Oregon found. Both realized thousands of dollars in savings per year after installing low-flow toilets, faucets and showers, more than doubling the return on investment in water saving features.
Since Rudy went green, he continues to discover eco-friendly ways to improve every facet of life