Positioning yourself as an environmentally-friendly vendor can make you more attractive to HOAs and property managers
- Offering sustainable services can lead to more jobs from HOAs
- Your methods will vary based on the industry
- Your strategy might involve outside-the-box thinking
- Marketing your business as environmentally friendly and sustainable is advantageous
Sustainability has developed into a buzzword of sorts, but there is actually a lot of substance behind it. As a contractor, offering environmentally-friendly services is not only beneficial for people and the planet, but it could gain you favor with homeowners and property managers who prioritize sustainability.
Of course, the sustainable methods you utilize will depend on your industry. After all, a pool maintenance firm can’t offer the same sustainability options as a roofing company because these businesses have little in common.
Once you’ve established some eco-conscious practices, you must position yourself in the market as a sustainable option. That way, HOAs and property managers looking to become more eco-friendly will notice you.
In this post, we discuss some sustainable practices for contractors in various industries that can very well come in handy when bidding on jobs.
Maintenance and construction
Construction and roofing companies can take many steps to become more sustainable, including adjusting their building and waste collection techniques and using alternate materials.
To begin, put as much of a structure together as possible offsite in a controlled environment to reduce waste. The idea is that building on-site can lead to weather-related mistakes and increase the chance of toxins escaping into the soil. It also means you’ll have fewer resources available than you would at your construction yard.
Having a construction waste management plan is also helpful because it helps you separate recyclable materials from those destined for the landfill. Haulers, for example, allow construction workers to recycle about 75% of their materials without having to separate them because they use pickers to separate materials instead of job sites needing multiple trash bins for different types of waste.
You might also consider using materials made from recycled products or local sources. Recycled materials keep waste away from landfills, and the less distance your materials travel, the lower their carbon footprint.
Some materials are more sustainable than others. If you’re redoing the floors throughout a complex, bamboo is more eco-friendly than many other options.
Roofers might opt for clay, concrete, slate, or metal instead of asphalt, while fencing contractors can choose bamboo, biocomposite, or wood from a provider with sustainable harvesting practices.
Research how your firm can develop more sustainable building practices and use eco-friendly materials, so property managers can propose these methods to homeowners.
Electrical and plumbing services
It’s no secret that electricity use is high worldwide, as about 40% of all energy consumed globally relates to this source. As a result, using less electricity within an HOA can benefit everyone.
Electrical contractors can position themselves as sustainable by offering new options.
The first step is to recommend LED lighting for every unit and install LED lights in all common areas. If you’re responsible for changing light bulbs inside homes, you can switch those to LED bulbs, too. These lights use about 75% less electricity than incandescents, so they’re more sustainable and have lower operating costs.
Offering services like solar panel installation, electrical vehicle charging station set-up, sub-metering and monitoring, and automatic climate control options also ensure community managers recognize you as a sustainable contractor.
Plumbers can make a difference by using eco-friendly materials like recycled steel, cast iron, and high-density polyethylene, often made from recycled materials, when repairing pipes. Installing low flow fixtures, recommending energy-efficient appliances like washing machines and dishwashers, and immediately repairing leaks can also reduce water consumption.
Water and electricity aren’t changing, but upgrading the products, appliances, and fixtures that deliver these services can make an HOA more sustainable. Understanding that some communities are looking for these features can bring you additional work.
Sustainable outdoor practices
Contractors responsible for outdoor maintenance can also integrate environmentally-friendly concepts into their updated service offerings.
Pool maintenance workers, for example, can offer to install regeneration zones. This service creates a natural way to clean the pool with plant life, eliminating the need for chlorine.
While many HOAs might not be receptive to this idea yet, learning how to do it and making it available when needed helps position your company as sustainable.
Other ways to make swimming pools more sustainable include:
- Installing moss filters
- Using Energy Star certified pumps
- Replacing incandescent bulbs with LEDs
- Opting for a solar heater
Lawn care professionals can offer alternatives to synthetic fertilizers and chemical-based herbicides, as well.
Estimates suggest that homeowners use about 70 million pounds of pesticides and herbicides annually in the United States. These chemicals kill 60-70 million birds nationally and up to 90% of earthworms in the lawns they’re applied to. Avoiding these products is better for the property and the environment, so offering other options is a good start.
You can also swap to battery-powered or electric mowers, as gas mowers in the United States use 580 million gallons of fuel every year.
Even something as simple as switching from Kentucky bluegrass, which uses an incredible amount of water, to a strain more suited to your area can save water and protect the environment.
If you’re responsible for removing pests from an HOA, you should prioritize sustainable control methods. While poisoning rats, bugs, and other invasive species is probably the easiest method to eliminate them, these toxins stay in the soil for years and could harm the environment, pets, or human beings. Whenever possible, it’s best to use a live trap and relocate the animals.
You can also recommend natural pest control methods like plants that deter particular animals. Rodents, for instance, avoid scents like rosemary, lavender, garlic, peppermint, and sage.
The key as a pool, lawn care, or pest control professional is to offer natural alternatives to the chemicals many contractors offer. Any community managers with an interest in sustainability will notice this shift.
Positioning yourself as a sustainable contractor
As you can see, there are countless eco-friendly practices your company can integrate if you wish to become more sustainable. Not every HOA will take you up on these offers, but having these options available to your customers could help you gain business from communities that prioritize an environmentally-friendly approach.
Another way to easily gain business from HOA communities is by using VendorSmart, which brings contractors, HOAs, and property managers together through an innovative vendor management platform. Interested vendors can sign up for an account, go through the compliance vetting process, and begin bidding on jobs. Sustainable contractors can include relevant information on their profiles to make them stand out.
Contact VendorSmart today to learn more about how our service can help connect you to community managers.