[fb_button]Many Chicagoland tenants are becoming increasingly conscious of green, environmentally responsible lifestyles. By necessity, green living involves the apartments they live in. Owners of condos should jump on the wagon with these changes because they make the property more desirable to owners and future buyers both, while also cutting down on total building energy usage (and therefore expenses).
Because water use is the utility most often covered by the association, the most tangible savings will occur there. Consider installing new water fixtures, starting with water-efficient showerheads and faucets, which do make a difference and are low investment. From there, depending on your budget, you might want to consider installing more efficient (or dual flush) toilets and choosing Energy-Star rated appliances when the old ones give out.
Changing over to compact flourescent bulbs is a no brainer, and they tend to pay for themselves quickly. Newer, programmable thermostats are also a great update, because instead of maintaining the same set temperature all day, they allow the residents to use less energy when they're not home. Of course, this is also possible with a manual thermostat, but you'd be surprised how much of a difference automation can make.
When the time comes for major updates, such as flooring or kitchen rehabs, the market is now full of environmentally-conscious options that don't compromise on style — from sustainably cut wood floors to kitchen counters made of recycled glass.
The strugle for the owner will always remain keeping expenses low while still having an up-to-date, modern condo. By following the steps above, you should be able to take an environmentally-conscious step into the 21st century without breaking the bank.[fb_button]