Sustainable Real Estate: Paving The Way for A Greener Future

September 13, 2023by Sterling Homes0

Discover the role of sustainability in Real Estate investment:

In recent times, the real estate industry has undergone a transformative shift toward sustainability. This is largely influenced by the growing environmental concerns, regulatory changes, and evolving preferences of individuals. Sustainable real estate, also known as green real estate, goes beyond conventional building techniques. It produces structures that are economically viable, environmentally responsible, and energy-efficient.

In this blog post, we will explain what sustainable real estate is about, its features, benefits, and impact on shaping a more sustainable future.

What is Sustainable Real Estate?

Sustainable real estate is the development, design, construction, and operation of buildings that promote energy efficiency, and resource conservation, and have low environmental effects. The ability of sustainable real estate to mitigate climate change, and reduce energy consumption, while offering healthier living environments makes it relevant.

Adopting sustainable real estate practices is essential to reaching climate goals because buildings contribute significantly to global greenhouse gas emissions.

Features of Sustainable Real Estate

The following features demonstrate what constitutes sustainable real estate, its benefits, and how they pave the way for a greener future. 

1. Energy Efficiency

Sustainable buildings incorporate energy-efficient technologies and materials, such as LED lighting, smart HVAC systems, efficient insulation, and smart energy management systems. These features reduce energy consumption, leading to lower utility bills and decreased carbon emissions. It also attracts tenants that value sustainability, and enhance the overall value of the property.

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2. Water Conservation 

Water-saving features like rainwater harvesting systems, low-flow fixtures, and greywater recycling are integrated into sustainable properties. This helps to minimize strain on local water resources, reduce water consumption, and maintain a delicate balance between human needs and environmental stability.

Sustainable real estate also emphasizes water-efficient landscaping practices such as the use of native plants and drip irrigation.

3. Green Construction Materials 

Sustainable real estate highlights the use of renewable, recycled, and locally sourced building materials such as reclaimed wood, recycled metal, and low-VOC paints. These materials minimize the environmental impact of construction, reduce waste, and support local economies. 

They also enhance indoor air quality, thereby promoting the health and well-being of occupants.

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4. Waste Management

Sustainable real estate prioritizes the recycling, composting, and reuse of materials during construction and demolition to reduce waste. It also employs the concept of adaptive reuse which is the repurposing of existing buildings for new functions. This would dissuade the tearing down of old structures thereby reducing waste and minimizing the environmental impact of new construction. 

5. Integration of Green Technologies 

Green technologies include the use of solar panels, energy-efficient appliances, and smart home technology. Automated systems that control lighting, temperature, and appliances based on occupancy and time of day help optimize energy consumption and minimize waste.

All of these contribute to sustainability and enhance the convenience, attractiveness, and marketability of the property.

6. Sustainable Community development 

Sustainable real estate recognizes the value of sustainable community development where residential, commercial, and recreational spaces coexist within the same area. This promotes walkability, access to public transportation, and green spaces. Proximity to amenities, parks, and reliable transit options reduces traffic congestion, encourages a more active lifestyle, promotes a more connected community, and reduces the carbon footprint associated with daily commuting. 

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Green Building Certifications

With developing sustainable real estate comes green building certifications. These certifications play a pivotal role in promoting sustainable practices within the real estate industry. They prove that the property meets specific sustainability standards and provides credibility and assurance of environmental performance.

Green certification programs recognized internationally include Leadership in Energy and Environmental Design (LEED), and Building Research Establishment Environmental Assessment Method (BREEAM). 

Investors and tenants increasingly value properties with green certifications due to their positive impact on the environment and long-term operational savings.

Green building certificates are a sign of responsible development and are consistent with the worldwide trend toward adopting environmentally friendly methods. 

Economic and Social Benefits of Sustainable Real Estate

Investing in sustainable Real Estate does not end in its environmental impact alone, there are several economic and social benefits attached to it.

Economic Benefits 

The economic benefits include:

  1. Energy efficiency and cost savings over time. 
  2. Higher Property value and a potentially quicker turnover 
  3. Lower cost of operation and maintenance 
  4. Job creation in fields such as construction, engineering, renewable energy, and architecture
Social Benefits 

The social benefits include:

  1. Enhanced health and well-being of consumers 
  2. Fosters community engagement and social interaction among residents 
  3. Reduced Environmental Impact 

 

Conclusion 

The concept of sustainable real estate improves financial performance and long-term value in the real estate sector in addition to aligning investments with environmental and social goals.

A greener and more sustainable future is possible through the increasing introduction of sustainable real estate investment. As the globe struggles with climate change, the real estate sector’s move towards sustainability indicates a dedication to responsible development and an improved way of living for generations to come.

 

Related:

Sustainable Real Estate: Building the Future

Real Estate Investment in Nigeria: Is it truly Worth it?

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