Although commercial real estate opportunities continue to grow, expand and thrive; gone are the days where people could care less about sustainability and environmental impacts. In fact, sustainability is not only a trend that is prompting action in multiple facets of the commercial real estate field but driving and changing the landscape as a whole. Investors are paying more attention to sustainability standards for companies and choosing properties that are more sustainable in a variety of ways.

Let’s take a look at a few sustainability trends we have our eye on for 2019.

1. Smarter Recycling

Recycling may seem like an age-old concept. However, it is fueling the sustainability conversation when it comes to commercial real estate. Consumers feel the need to reduce waste and recycle more efficiently. Properties that utilize recycled materials or building materials even partially can use this as an attractive selling point. Additionally, investors can leverage the usage of these materials when it comes to creating an attractive portfolio option.

2. Lessen Environmental Impact

Being sensitive in measuring and actively lessening your property’s environmental impact gives you a competitive edge over your competitors. Working with, employing or leasing to sustainable employers can help you appeal to those who put importance on environmental issues. It is important to capitalize on the growing market trend and demand for less environmental impact in all facets of a business.

3. Property Amenities

Properties that include more sustainable options such as community green spaces or gardens, recycling, electric car charging stations and more continue to be recognized as a valuable option. For multifamily investment properties, units with these amenities and others such as smart thermostats, solar panels can be sold or leased for more, creating higher returns.

4. Utilizing Intelligence

Using technology and data innovations to your advantage is one major trend for the new year. With more and more companies offering reliable environmental data and analysis, buildings are being built, marketed and operated in ways that highlight their sustainability. However, it is pivotal that the data collected is analyzed and used appropriately to maximize how it can be capitalized on in a commercial market.

5. Changing Laws

More than ever, with a constantly changing political climate, it is important to pay attention to laws and their changes and updates. Federal, state and municipal laws are often being changed, especially with a surge of pressure from voters to be more sustainable. For example, recently there have been updates to how commercial and investment properties must disclose their energy usage. However, the laws vary between the type and size of the property, and how and where it must be disclosed. As a commercial real estate professional its increasingly important to keep up to date with these changes, as they can affect asset performance and returns on investments.

All in all, it is good practice to focus on you sustainability, and environmental impact to be kind to the earth, However, with these trends, you can also appeal to investors, clients and the public while possibly increasing profitability on your commercial property as well.

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