The need to take care of our environment has affected all spheres of our lives. In the same manner, the real estate market is following the trends. Demand for eco-friendly homes in big cities such as NYC is on the rise. That’s why buyers now have more options than ever. Old and new buildings, materials, and technology are developing toward greener solutions, making New York as eco-friendly as possible. Therefore, if you’re looking for a new home, maybe it’s time for a green option. In this New Yorker’s guide, you’ll find out more about LEED-certified condos and their benefits.
What’s a LEED-certified condo?
Firstly, let’s learn the basics. LEED stands for Leadership in Energy and Environmental Design. It’s one of the most common standards used in New York. The U.S. Green Building Council in Washington, DC, issues the certificates. This council has the vision to regenerate the health of the buildings and their residents and provide a better future for new generations. It encourages builders to choose more eco-friendly projects and build better places for their residents.
Depending on several categories, a condo can get one of the four levels of LEED certification. There are Certified, Silver, Gold, and Platinum LEED certificates. They differ in the number of points they get through different categories:
- Certified (40-49 points)
- Silver (50-59 points)
- Gold (60-79 points)
- Platinum (80 points or more).
The categories where a property can earn points are energy consumption, water efficiency, low-emitting paints, indoor environmental quality, etc. Based on these, a condo in NYC can get more or fewer points, which finally add up to a particular certification level.
LEED condos in New York
When browsing homes in NYC, there’s something to know about green buildings. Even though you would expect that all new buildings are environmentally friendly, that’s not always the case. Some older properties can also apply for LEED certification and be greener than a new project. New Yorkers choose and build properties according to their focus and purpose. For some of them, it’s important to have an eco-friendly place. However, some buildings are about location, luxury materials, and amenities, where they ‘forget’ about environmental standards. This results in the uneven implementation of green solutions. That’s why you should know what you’re looking for when browsing NYC real estate market. Set your priorities and browse the condos according to your needs, budget, and lifestyle.
What are the advantages of LEED-certified condos?
Why should you go for a LEED-certified condo anyway? Let’s explore the benefits of living in such a place to help you make a faster decision about your relocation. The advantages of an eco-friendly home are:
- a healthy home – choosing LEED-certified condos, people go for a healthier lifestyle. This is particularly important if you’re moving with your family and need to care for the young ones. Improved air quality, eco-friendly materials are a much safer option for your family members;
- protecting the environment – a more obvious reason why you should go for a sustainable home is a low impact on the environment. Living in a big city such as NYC makes this point even stronger;
- lower maintenance and operating costs – when you choose more energy and water-efficient home, you’re opting for lower utility bills for your apartment. And with the costly NYC lifestyle and housing, this is an essential aspect;
- less noise – in the city that never sleeps, getting your bit of peace is precious. Better insulation and high-quality windows reduce the noise that comes from the streets, and that’s something New Yorkers surely care about.
Where to look for green condos in NYC?
As we have mentioned, the implementation of LEED certification is uneven in NYC. However, some neighborhoods show a higher number of such properties. If you plan to move to a green home, you should look in Battery Park City, Chelsea, the Upper East and West Side, Midtown West, Park Slope, and Williamsburg. These neighborhoods in Manhattan and Brooklyn include a lot o LEED-certified condos. Therefore, you can start your home search in some of them.
In general, the prices of LEED-certified homes are not much higher. However, when it comes to platinum certifications of LEED, the situation is a bit different. Buyers are willing to pay more for such properties – up to 20%. That’s why you should check the certification first, as homes are not made in the same way. Not all of the properties have the same level of LEED certification, which can affect the price.
Planning your move to a green home
When you decide to relocate to an eco-friendly condo, try to make that relocation as green as possible. Saving energy, reducing costs, and protecting the environment are possible even during the moving process. Here are the best tips to do it effortlessly.
Recycle packing materials
Even when you are moving house, you should know that waste reduction is possible. Try to use second-hand packing supplies and items you already have in your home. Also, you should recycle or donate things you no longer need – decluttering is essential when moving, but it shouldn’t result in more waste.
Green moving companies
Planning your move should start with a moving checklist. And one of the first things to do is to plan your moving day and hire a moving company. You can schedule your move with a company that uses eco-friendly solutions. This is not something that will cost you more but will do a lot for the environment.
Green storage options
Storing your items in boxes and a storage unit can be done in a better way. You can opt for storage bins that represent green solutions for your storage. These can be rented, reused, and taken back. You can have a mess-free home after the move and care about the environment by minimizing waste.
Take your time
Choosing a new home and relocating is a complex process, especially in cities like New York. That’s why you should take your time and choose your options wisely. Healthy alternatives are all around us – start your move by picking one of many LEED-certified condos in the Big Apple, and continue to prepare for the relocation to your new home.