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The #1 Solution for a More Sustainable Multifamily Community

May 16, 2024
Resident Experiences
Resident Services
Property Management

What’s the first sustainable business practice you think of when it comes to multifamily communities? Do you consider finite resources like energy and water, or reflect on paper-free opportunities for both residents and management?

If implementing sustainable business practices sounds like a far-off goal for your property management team, you’re not alone. Most multifamily communities want to provide a more sustainable environment for their residents, but teams are overwhelmed before they even have a plan.

Start with Elevated Living, an eco-friendly resident engagement app that does it all.

“Investing in sustainable building and community features will better the environment, offer many benefits to your residents and team members, and appeal to a wide range of prospect demographics. In fact, the 200 major companies listed in the S&P 500 that identify as 'leaders in managing climate risk' have outperformed other top companies by 33% in the past few months,” explains Multifamily Biz.

Here are the top four ways you can benefit from an eco-friendly resident lifestyle app:

Go Paperless

Offering residents paperless options may seem like a no-brainer, but paper applications, leases, and move-in lists continue to keep many communities locked in a vicious tree-dependent cycle. Once a building is powered by Elevated Living’s white label resident app, management teams are delighted how easy it is to go digital. Space-saving paperless options also allow management teams to keep a clutter-free office and keep track of important documents without the fear of losing stacks of paperwork.

“By eliminating paper and encouraging prospects to use the resident portal, Blue Ridge was able to secure 85 percent absorption, though some of its communities are 95 percent to 100 percent paperless,” writes the National Apartment Association.

“Our goal is to have 80 percent of our applicants start and complete the leasing process online,” says Stephanie Puryear Helling, Senior Director of Operations, Real Estate Strategic Services, for Greystar.

“Once applicants become residents, our goal is to have 90 percent or more of occupied apartment homes registered for the resident portal,” Puryear Helling continues. “[Our] portal provides a convenient platform for residents to quickly pay rent, sign renewals and submit service requests online 24/7. There’s also a social feature within the portal where residents can engage with one another and the community.”

On-site Means Less Driving

Class A multifamily communities must offer residents an abundance of amenities to compete in today’s rental market. And the best amenities are those that don’t require residents to leave the building to take care of errands or book services. Saving gas, reducing auto emissions, and avoiding time-sucking traffic are the top reasons residents look for on-site services when choosing a multifamily home.

Property managers see the benefit of switching to one multi-purpose app to keep residents happy with on-site service providers that can be tailored to any need. Imagine booking a personal trainer that meets you in your building gym, or a monthly dog groomer that can pick up and deliver a freshly-groomed pooch right to your door. No need to leave the house to get your bike or car fixed - both can be scheduled right in your community with the touch of a button.

Need laundry picked up or healthy meal prep delivered? Multifamily buildings that provide concierge services are reducing emissions right from the get-go, since one service provider on the road is better than 20 residents driving to the same business. By giving residents options to reduce car use and allowing them to book everything from one branded app, management teams know they are doing the right thing for the planet.

Schedule Energy-Saving Maintenance

Whisper “resident-deferred maintenance” to any property owner, and you know the response won’t be positive. Busy residents may opt to avoid scheduling maintenance, whether they see the need or not. But when buildings offer an easy option to fix those nagging issues with the click of a button, management teams see a decrease in utility spending.

Leaky faucets and running commodes may not send up red flags for residents, and maintenance teams may not see the emergency in such simple fixes when bigger problems arise elsewhere on the property. Yet, keeping residents engaged in a sustainable community can include solutions like push notifications with reminders for general maintenance, or cordial and prompt communication via a ticketing process that includes multiple staff. Communities powered by Elevated Living enjoy both from one white label app.

Preventing deterioration, malfunction, failures, and other issues isn’t easy, so having a proactive team in place is imperative. Essential care like changing dirty HVAC filters and incandescent bulbs can all impact a building’s bottom line if ignored.

Sparkle More, Use Less

If your residents are looking to reduce the use of chemicals and VOCs in daily life, consider offering an eco-friendly house cleaning service like Sparkle.

One of the easiest ways to reduce your carbon footprint is to use nontoxic cleaning products, or ask your cleaning crew to go organic.

“Ask any green-living expert or organic devotee and they’ll tell you that the best natural cleaning products are regular white vinegar or baking soda with a little lemon or orange thrown in,” offers Katherine Gillespie of the New Yorker.

And while the claims to organic or nontoxic ingredients are plenty in the advertising world, house cleaning crews know the best options because they use them daily. Good Housekeeping explains, “You can expect eco-friendly cleaning supplies and tools to tout benefits like biodegradable formulas, ingredients sourced from renewable plants instead of non-renewable petroleum, refillable containers, and packaging made from higher percentages of recycled plastic or no plastic at all.”

No matter what choices move your multifamily community toward sustainability, energy efficiency, and other community features, engaging residents with an eco-friendly lifestyle app is a vital component to creating a healthy and vibrant property.