Why choose Eco-conscious design?
Why Environmentally Conscious design should matter for your student or multi-family housing community
Environmentally conscious interior design has become a top concern for many commercial developers looking to give their commercial spaces a competitive edge. Working alongside builders, architects, and engineers, interior designers are becoming more diligent about selecting environmentally responsible fixtures, finishes, and amenities that are good for the earth and for the tenants and residents they serve.
But what exactly does eco-conscious design entail, and why should it matter for your student or multi-family housing community? Discover the answers to these questions and more by getting the full scoop on sustainable design below!
What is Environmentally Conscious Design?
Environmentally conscious design means different things to different people. In general, sustainable design principles tend to focus on the following:
- Consumption of non-renewable resources
- Use of local and authentic materials
- Water conservation
- Sustainable supply chains
- Ethical production practices
In some instances, properties may wish to take their commitment to sustainability a step further by working with designers who are certified in Leadership in Energy and Environmental Design (LEED). However, environmentally conscious design doesn’t always mean adhering to strict sustainability standards.
“Even something as simple as incorporating plants, greenery, or moss art can be a nice ode to environmentally conscious design,” explains interior designer, Ashley Harris. “Focusing a lot on bringing the outside in and vice-versa is also a great way to blend your natural surroundings with your interior space.”
Why Does It Matter?
According to recent research, tenants are placing more and more importance on properties that are able to offer sustainably designed spaces for them to live. In fact, 52% of tenants surveyed stated they would be willing to pay 10% more in rent while 33% stated they would accept a 5% rent increase if their buildings offered eco-friendly amenities. Keeping this in mind, it’s easy to see how investing in environmentally conscious design is so important for property managers seeking to remain profitable.
Eco-Conscious Design Must Haves for Multi-Family & Student Housing Properties
If you’re planning a redesign for your multi-family or student housing property, consider incorporating some of the following must-have environmentally conscious design features:
One of the easiest ways to give your multi-family or student housing property an eco-friendly vibe is by including plenty of greenery throughout your space.
“Our team loves the use of moss art, which is why we work a lot with the Savage Way to create custom art pieces that bring the outdoors in,” says Harris. Decorating the space with plenty of plants and greenery doesn’t just communicate eco-friendliness. Studies show that the use of plants in interior design help:
- Reduce stress and anxiety
- Improve sleep
- Filter your indoor air supply
- Increase productivity
- Fight colds and allergies
Beyond decorating with greenery, finding ways to bring the outdoors in is a great way to promote eco-conscious design. This may include interior architectural features such as installing garage door openings or accordion doors that allow for plenty of natural light and uninterrupted access to the outdoors.
Location plays a critical role in any property’s success, and it’s important to consider how your tenants gain access to the community amenities that surround your space. If your property is located right within the heart of downtown with easy access to local shopping and restaurants, this might be a great opportunity for you to encourage greener transportation methods for your residents by including a bike path on your property. On-site bike paths, storage facilities, and even repair and wash stations can be a big selling point for tenants interested in leading a greener lifestyle.
If your property is located further from town, consider catering to the eco-conscious tenant by incorporating electric vehicle charging stations in your parking garage. Alternatively, you could partner with local ride share vendors or public transportation providers to offer your residents an eco-friendlier way to travel.
Following the COVID-19 pandemic, peoples’ interest in gardening soared to an all-time high with seed sales seeing a 60% increase in 2020 alone. As more residents long for the opportunity to plant their own vegetables, fruits, and flowers, it’s a good idea to consider including a community garden space for tenants.
“It could be really cool design-wise to have a rooftop garden or terrace that doubles as a community gathering space while also collecting solar power or rainwater to power the building,” Harris muses. Not only would this encourage tenants to gather outdoors and garden, but it would also position the property to potentially earn LEED certification status.
In addition to amenities, developers and property owners should also focus their efforts on selecting recycled or reclaimed materials throughout their interior and architectural design. Harris warns, however, that going this route can get expensive quick:
“A lot of times, those things cost more to the client,” she explains. “So being able to have the budget to support eco-friendlier materials is important.”
Along with choosing recycled materials, it’s also recommended that properties select fixtures and finishes from manufacturers in the United States. From a logistics standpoint, choosing materials made in the USA helps reduce shipping needs, meaning a smaller carbon footprint for your project when compared to imported materials.
<>h2>SouthPark Interiors: Your Eco-Conscious Design Partners
If you’re seeking to prioritize environmentally conscious design at your multi-family or student housing property, look no further than SouthPark Interiors for the eco-friendly design partners you need. From our LEED Gold-rated design at the Ryder on Olive to our indoor-outdoor clubhouse design at Greene Crossing, our interior design team offers personalized sustainable solutions that meet the precise needs of our diverse clientele. Begin your eco-conscious design by contacting SouthPark Interiors online today!