Investing in Green Properties
A Green Property (green building, green construction or sustainable building) refers to property and building design using a process that is environmentally responsible and resource-efficient from siting to design, construction, operation, maintenance, renovation, and demolition. In other words, green building design involves finding the balance between homebuilding and a sustainable environment.
The design and material used in a built environment have profound effects on personal health, economies and the natural environment.
Green properties are a holistic concept with the goal of enhancing positive environmental impacts, and minimizing negative impacts.
We simply cannot continue to harvest resources the way we are now indefinitely, since we live in a finite world. Building and construction activities worldwide consume 3 billion tons of raw materials each year or 40 percent of total global use of materials according to the WorldWatch Institute. Using green building materials and products promotes conservation of dwindling nonrenewable resources internationally. Because of this alone, sustainably built structures and ecologically designed landscapes are the future of the real estate industry.
Further, at the end of any construction material’s lifecycle, it is usually simply discarded into landfill, with the toxins making their way into the environment. Using green building materials in building projects, and choosing to buy sustainably built structures can help reduce the environmental impacts associated with the extraction, transport, processing, fabrication, installation, reuse, recycling, and disposal of building industry source materials.
Another aspect of green properties is the energy efficient design of the buildings. Using energy efficient heating, appliances and lighting has a lot of benefits to homeowners, including:
- Increased comfort, including through more even heating.
- Lower energy and utility costs, which can even translate to more buying power: Banks recognize that a month utility bill savings will allow you to put that money into your mortgage. Saving even $50/month translates to $18,000 in savings over the course of a 30 year mortgage!
- A smaller carbon footprint.
- Reduced air pollution.
- Potential tax credits or savings through government retrofit programs.
Research reveals many diseases are related to the materials used in the household including structural materials, paints and cleaning products.
The EPA ranks indoor air quality as a top five environmental risk to public health. EPA studies found indoor air pollutants are at least 2 to 5 times greater than outdoor pollution levels and can be as bad as 100 times worse!
Indoor Air Quality is enhanced by utilizing materials that have:
- Low or no toxins: Materials that emit few or no carcinogens, reproductive toxicants, or irritants.
- Minimal chemical emissions: no or minimal Volatile Organic Compounds (VOCs).
- Low-VOC assembly methods: minimal VOC-producing compounds needed for installation, or no-VOC (e.g. toxic glues)
- Moisture resistance: they inhibit the growth of mold in buildings.
- Low-VOC and toxin free maintenance: they require only simple, non-toxic, or low-VOC cleaning methods.
What We Can Do
We can help by making conscious decisions on healthy housing choices, including choosing buildings with non-toxic materials, high energy efficiency, and sustainable resource use.
Right now, we are creating a platform for the buying and selling of such green properties, and will assist you in the process with our service team of professionals.
It is our privilege to work towards raising awareness of sustainable, healthy living and to work for the benefit of future generations.