Green Your Marketing With Eco Features

In any tough real estate market, separating your listings from the pack is key to a quicker sale.

September 1, 2008

Since green homes are selling faster and commanding higher prices than other properties in many markets, more real estate professionals are seeing the value of green.

For example, Solaire, a green residential high-rise in New York, commands rents 10 percent to 15 percent higher than market rates. In Rocklin, Calif., LEED-certified homes in the Carsten Crossings development outsold the competition 2 to 1.

So what can you do to attract these coveted green listings and position yourself as an expert in marketing eco-conscious homes?

1. Get certified.

Show customers you’re an expert by earning credentials such as the NATIONAL ASSOCIATION OF REALTORS®' Green designation, the Leadership in Energy and Environmental Design (LEED) Accredited Professional program, or EcoBroker. You’ll learn what makes a home green and also how to educate clients on ways they can make their homes more environmentally responsible and energy efficient.

2. Market yourself as green-friendly.

Karen Sutherland, an EcoBroker-certified practitioner with RE/MAX Beach Towne in Melbourne Beach, Fla., says one key to her marketing plan is greening her Web site. She provides information on energy savings, green construction and products, and the latest green news. “I let everyone know that I’m an EcoBroker,” she says. “I’m also a board member for a local grassroots, progressive organization, and I’m meeting like-minded people there.”

3. Partner with other professionals.

Look for green-focused builders to partner with in marketing homes. Power Realty Partners’ Jennifer Spivey, an Atlanta practitioner with LEED Accredited Professional and EcoBroker certifications, says she has teamed up with a developer on a project featuring three green homes in a densely populated area of the city. “The green community in Atlanta is small, but it’s very open and willing to share ideas," she says.

Spivey says a green niche offers both financial and personal benefits. “People really look to us for advice, and we have the opportunity to really make their lives better through education,” she says. 

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