Green Real Estate Trends

Posted: 12/08/2014 9:27 am EST Updated: 12/08/2014 7:00 pm EST

Our health should be our biggest concern. Without good health we aren’t much good to our families, our employees, or our communities. There are the obvious daily habits such as diet, exercise, and social activities that ensure good health, but what about the things we don’t always think about? The less obvious areas of impact on our health include our homes, offices, and the built environment around us.

Healthy Homes
Homeowners are starting to place health high on the priority list when looking at real estate investments. Families are looking for long-term healthy options. As a society we now have a better understanding of the impact that our homes have on our wellbeing. Our homes are where are stories begin and end so quality of life is essential in creating a healthy living environment.

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Image via DelosLiving.com

We now have ways to measure the health of our built environment. We’re also better equipped to make important shifts in our attitudes and actions in having more control over our built environments. Thanks to leaders like Delos Living, homeowners now have healthy home benchmarks and can set higher standards of living from the quality of their homes. Leaders in wellness real estate, Delos challenges the status quo by showing us what we should be expecting from our built environment. They’ve shown us how our homes can be a sanctuary of health, wellbeing, and environmental sustainability, in turn shaping sustainable cities for our future generations to leadhealthy and productive lifestyles.

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Image via DelosLiving.com

Healthy homes are designed to enhance the health and wellbeing of the home’s occupants. These healthy homes are great option for families as awareness grows about the dangers of building materials and other environmental factors in a home’s design. Many builders and architects are beginning to specialize in this design style meaning the availability of homes like these are now more widespread. Green building is much more than a trend. It’s a result of prioritizing human health and environmental responsibility.

When entering the real estate market, one should consider the building’s air, water, light, and energy and to take steps to be educated on the best options available. This will help prevent purchasing a home that exhibits traits of sick building syndrome.

Commercial Real Estate Value
Corporations are making the environmental responsibility shift much quicker than their residential counterparts when it comes to real estate. It seems that smaller projects use the theory that they have less room to justify the upfront costs and often question the potential of the ROI. Calculating ROI and communicating the benefits of green building is essential. This only further proves how necessary it is to have agents with green real estate designations who are able to explain the value and benefits of green homes and properties. It’s only a matter of time before building legislation and growing expectations will affect ROI on personal or commercial real estate.

Healthy classrooms and product disclosure is a hot topic in schools across the globe. It’s no wonder when you consider how much time your child spends indoors.

Choose a Real Estate Agent with Green Designation
Municipalities and other levels of government are starting to make environmental policies and codes mandatory. To be competitive as a real estate professional, it’s imperative to remain on the cutting edge of green building innovation, education, and designations. That’s why continued training is now offered for career developmentwhich will also result in providing more value to real estate clients. Many real estate boards don’t require their agents to pursue green designations. (Healthy home and neighborhood checklist).

4 green real estate designations available are:
1. EcoBroker Certified® Designations (US)
2. National Association of Green Agents and Brokers (non-profit): Offers the GreenRealestate™ program that leads to the Accredited Green Agent™ and Accredited Green Broker™ designations.
3. Earth Advantage (US): Sustainability Training for Accredited Real Estate Professionals (S.T.A.R.) Certification.
4. Leadership in Energy & Environmental Design: LEED Green Associate or LEED AP designations can be taken through LEED exams.

Increase ROI on Your Home
Forward-thinking homeowners are greening their home for better re-sale value. Care for your largest investment – the health of your family, and maybe one of your largest real estate investments, your home. At least make inquiries about products and green renovate materials or at purchasing a green home. Many people are taking it to the next level by combining green energy into their design with the goal of achieving the “net-zero” status. There are many financial benefits to strategizing the energy efficiency of your home.

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The Economics of Green. Image via Tate Inc.

Green Hotels
The hospitality industry is looking at ways to be more sustainable and innovating to improving their bottom line. By changing its operations with green solutions, they provide operational benefits to the businesses and have lasting positive impacts on both customers and brand awareness. Hotels such as the Best Western Chillworth Manor in the UK, the Farimont Hotels & Resorts, and The Rubens at the Palace hotel in London are all leaders in sustainability.

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