There’s no question that going green has a positive impact on the environment as a whole. But, as those who prefer organic food over regular know well, it doesn’t come cheap. Making changes that benefit the earth might not be so beneficial to the HOA’s financial accounts.
There’s also the question of what “going green” even means. Does making sure that the HOA has a recycling program count? Or do all of the toilets in the complex need to be swapped out for composting toilets in order to be considered “green”? When is enough enough?
Here are a few ideas that can help your HOA to be more eco-friendly. Some are cheap and easy, and some come with a hefty price tag. You’ll have to decide if it’s worth it for your HOA to make the investments.
Trees. Not only are trees aesthetically pleasing, but if they’re placed on the side of the complex that gets the most sun, it can save on air conditioning energy consumption. Trees can be costly to put in, but can save money in the long run.
Thermostats. Technologically advanced thermostats that can turn themselves on and off automatically are great for common areas, and ensure heat isn’t wasted. It’s worth encouraging residents to invest in them as well. Some of these thermostats can be really expensive, but usually pay for themselves over time.
Light bulbs. CFL bulbs are probably the cheapest and easiest way to start down the green path. While marginally more expensive than traditional bulbs, they use only 20% of the energy and have 6 to 10 times the life span. Installing these in indoor and outdoor common areas is a no-brainer.
Rain sensors. If your HOA has a sprinkler system, rain sensors are a great way to save on your water bill. They can detect when the weather is taking care of watering the lawn, and shut down the sprinklers when they’re not needed. Rain sensors are inexpensive and pay for themselves quickly in savings.
Whether or not any of these green upgrades make sense for your HOA is entirely up to you. But you may find that residents are in favor of making changes that benefit the environment, and your HOA can start reducing its carbon footprint right away!
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