Which Green, Sustainability Features Do Boomers Crave the Most?

Sunday, August 2, 2015

Multifamily Executive (07/02/15) Shanesy, Lauren

Retiring baby boomers are looking for energy-efficient housing, not only for environmental concerns but also to save money, contain costs, and reap health benefits. Popular features include energy-efficient lighting. It costs nearly five times as much to burn one 60-watt light bulb as it costs to burn a single 12-watt LED light bulb over a year, according to the U.S. Department of Energy. Energy Star-rated appliances that save energy and water also are popular among boomers. Replacing a 10-year-old clothes washer with a new Energy Star unit saves about $135 a year, according to Energy Star. Retiring boomers also favor energy-efficient windows, high SEER-rated HVAC systems, programmable thermostats, and high levels of insulation. Not only do these features save energy and water, but are associated with important health benefits, such as improved indoor air quality, moisture control, and low VOC materials. As a result, many market-rate developers are using National Green Building Standards, a standard accessible to most builders. Having a green-certified community “becomes a market differentiator,” says JDM Associates co-founder John Klein. “Not just to attract more people, but to retain your tenants so you reduce turnover.”

Lauren Shanesy 8/2/2015

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