Colors for Real Estate Marketing

I would like to think that colors are what make the world fun. It is the essence of life and gives substance to a picture. Without it the scenery can be quite dull and lifeless. The same applies when marketing real estate.

Colors can give your service an identity. They can project a specific character or an aura that gives people an idea about your service or company.

We are all admirers of colors. You’ll have to think twice if you want to establish your brand when marketing real estate. This can be a game setter when marketing homes.

The most important to remember when thinking about colors is that everyone likes blue. If you can’t decide what to use, start with blue. Blue is also the most used color for corporate branding because it represents authority.

A good color combination for Blue is Orange. While Dark Orange can mean dull, the light (pumpkin) color can mean trendy. The websites Homes and ActiveRain should give you an idea of how Orange can blend well with Blue.

Another real estate color favorite is Green. The most common meaning for this color is nature and peace. You can take a look at Zillow and Trulia’s logo if you want to see how a touch of Green can complement your brand.

So far I have discussed colors from listing websites but what about Realtors? If you’re interested how realtors’ brand their services, read below and enjoy.

While DukeRealty favors Black and Green, KellerWilliams and ReMax seems to favor Red. This color (Red) is most commonly associated with love. It can also mean excitement and goes well with White and / or Black.

Have you noticed that Keller Williams was using White to blend with Red? In case you’re wondering, the color White usually means purity and balance.

If we look at Pulte Homes’ logo we would notice the color Gray to complement their Blue text. Gray is an alternative of Silver that signifies a helping hand. It can also mean prosperity which is a good idea for a home.

Yellow is considered to represent brightness and optimism. It’s not a real estate favorite but it does grab people’s attention. You might consider Yellow if you want people to turn their heads and take a look at your real estate brand.

Still can’t decide which colors to use? How about checking Colliers International’s logo to see how they made, Blue, White, Yellow, and Red work.

4 Green Building Materials – Selection and Criteria

Green building materials help homeowners save on energy, resulting in tremendous savings in the power bills. Apart from increased energy efficiency, home owners also benefit from increased flexibility on count of maintenance costs too. Improved design flexibility is also another reason why people go for green building materials for their homes.

Here are 4 criteria for you to choose green building materials for your homes:

1. Resource efficiency – Resource efficiency can be targeted by making use of the products that meet the below mentioned metrics.

  • Natural and renewable – Basically, preference is given to materials that come from sustainable managed resources and are certified by an independent third party body.
  • Manufacturing processes’ efficiency – The products that are produced with the help of resource and energy efficient process, take precedence in the final choice.
  • Local availability – One of the main benefits of using green building materials is that they are and should be locally available.
  • ยท Durability – The materials used in constructing such buildings must last longer than other conventional materials used for construction purposes.

2. Improvement in air quality – Products or materials that meet the below mentioned criteria, should be used.

  • Non-toxic content – When used, the materials shouldn’t emit any toxic wastes, either in solid, liquid or gaseous forms.
  • The products should also have minimum emissions of volatile organic compounds. Such materials should be able to maximize or optimize energy efficiency and in the process, should also reduce chemical emissions.
  • The products and the materials should be able to resist moisture or any unforeseen moisture attacks.

3. Energy efficiency is an important metric to look out for, which can be fulfilled by selecting building materials that help in the reduction of water consumption in buildings and other associated facilities.

4. The building materials used in green buildings construction should be able to reduce water consumption in buildings.

Constructing green buildings is clearly a good idea for developers and home owners to work with, especially if they wish to save a lot of energy. These buildings will definitely help in conserving energy and improving health and productivity, but that can only be achieved if the right building materials are used. By following the criteria mentioned above, developers could look forward to selecting the right building materials for a green building design.

What is the Definition of a Green Home?

The term green home is being used more and more often in the residential building industry, but what does it really mean. According to the Green Building Council of Australia a green house is “a high performing home that is energy and water efficient, has good indoor air quality, uses environmentally sustainable materials and also uses the building site in a sustainable manner”. A green home also requires a holistic approach, beginning at the design stage and continuing on through the construction process and the eventual day-to-day running of the home. The main goal of these characteristics is to reduce the environmental impact a home will have over the course of its lifetime.

As mentioned above, a green house should begin at the design stage. Incorporating green design elements at the initial stages of a home construction will ensure the home can take advantage of the surrounding natural environment. By utilising the topography of the site, sunlight and breezes a green home can significantly reduce its dependence on additional heating and cooling sources. This saves the occupants money on their energy bills and reduces the production of greenhouse gases.

Choosing recycled and environmentally friendly building products is another important element of a green home. The type of materials used can affect the homes’ environmental impact and the health of the homes’ eventual residents. A green home utilises recycled timber or sustainable harvested plantation lumber for its structural and cosmetic components. It is also possible to use a range of other natural products in the construction of a green home, such as straw, mud, hemp and dirt. Although some of these materials are not conventional building products, it does not mean a green home has to look very different from a regular home. Many of the materials and finishes in a regular home contain formaldehyde and volatile organic chemicals (VOCs). Once installed in a home they continue to release gases which can be harmful to the people living in them. A green home uses materials and finishes with low or no VOCs that ensure good indoor air quality.

A green home also minimises the use of energy and water by using efficient materials and products. Water saving devices in the bathroom, toilet and laundry significantly reduces water consumption. Collection of rainwater and the recycling of grey water can further improve water efficiencies. Insulation in walls and ceilings helps maintain a constant indoor temperature reducing the need for mechanical heating and cooling. Energy and water efficient appliances can also be found in this home. They reduce environmental impacts and keep running costs down for the occupants.

Consideration of these factors and the inclusion of sustainable building techniques and materials make a green home use energy and water efficiently, provide a healthy environment for the occupants and reduce the environmental impacts over the lifetime of the dwelling.

The Eco Realtor

I am a big talker and doer when it comes to the environment. I believe that with what we know today, it would be disrespectful and completely unconscious to not make decisions based on the environment and what we know, especially considering that there are many choices available today. We all need guidance, so here are a few tips for you realtors to make a big impact.

1. Drive a hybrid. Because 33% of CO² that is being produced is from transportation (Sources of CO² in he US as of 2004). This conscious change in vehicles would make the biggest impact of all. We spend A LOT of time in our cars and when you are in the market for a new one…think green. For all you show-off realtors who need to have the best of the best, hybrids are very trendy and hip. The choices that are coming out for 2009/2010 are swanky. Google “new hybrids” and you’ll see.

2. Recycle and reuse. How many listings do you print off that you end up not using or even keeping? Lots! Please recycle. Or better yet, turn them over and re-print on the good side. I do it all the time. It’s my copy and when it is noticed by the buyer, I can brag how I am saving the environment. You’ll be saving some coin in your pocketbook too.

3. Use electronics. Instead of driving all over to get signatures, please fax, scan, or email. As long as you pick up the originals in the end, it all works out. You’ll not only save emissions from driving, money for gas, but your time as well. Another great electronic device is the PDA (or Blackberry, iPhone…whatever works for you). You’ll be saving a lot of trees and you can sync it with your computer making you more organized.

4. Encourage your work to go eco. If they don’t already recycle mention it every time you go in. They’ll get the idea. Ask to receive notices by email and not by paper. Ask them not to put junk mail into your mail box. Tell them about natural cleaning products. If that doesn’t motivate them, donate some!

Love your work and your environment. Passion goes a long way and so does thinking (and doing) about what type of impact your have. Or….just ignore the environment, it will go away.

What Is the Selection Criteria For Green Building Materials

The concept of a green home doesn’t rely solely on how a homeowner implements ways to make it more eco-friendly. Its whole concept covers sustainability of green building materials from planning, construction, and all the way when occupants are dwelling. You may want them on your house, but the availability of many green construction materials makes the selection process quite difficult. Here are the basic selection criteria to guide you when choosing green home building materials.

Resource efficiency

Resource efficiency is best explained when construction materials used are of known recycled contents. Natural resources like forests are conserved because fewer raw materials like wood are needed. The purchase of recycled construction materials is also a great step in reducing the energy consumption required during the manufacturing stages.

To maximize the resource efficiency of materials for use in construction, ensure that you are purchasing from nearby local manufacturers. This will also help reduce greenhouse emissions associated with the transport of materials from manufacturer to construction site.

Apart from using construction materials with recycled content, you can also make use of salvaged materials from nearby junk yards. There are also hardware stores that supply second hand construction materials. It can save you money while helping reduce garbage accumulation because the materials are saved from being totally junked.

Contributes to improved indoor air quality

Green building materials should be contributors to improved air quality inside the house. This means that they should pass standardized tests to prove they are nontoxic. Materials like paint should have reduced emissions of VOCs (volatile organic compounds). They should be health-friendly particularly to the respiratory system. Look for wall, roof, and other building materials that are less-resistant or fully resistant to moisture. These materials have the highest capacity to prevent the growth of biological contaminants. They can lessen the chances of mold and mildew growth inside the house.

Helps in water conservation

Earth’s water supply is said to be depleted fast if we will not conserve water properly. In fact, there are nations around the world which are already experiencing the effects of water wastage. Your choice of green building materials should help in water conservation efforts. The fixtures you should use in the kitchen, bathroom, comfort room, and laundry area should all have the WaterSense label by the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA). With this label in your faucets, flush, and showerheads – you are very sure that you are indeed conserving thousands of gallons throughout the lifetime of each fixture.

Green building materials help protect the nature. But they also establish appealing overall aesthetics of a green home. A refreshing and beautiful house is the true key to a comfortable living enjoyed by all family members!