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Top Sustainable Business Tips for New Contractors

Shutterstock Licensed Photo - 1390145858 | by Olga_Ionina



Developing a sustainability strategy is on the minds of many businesses nowadays. Construction companies are no exception. In fact, the market for green buildings is now worth $83 billion.

A growing number of construction companies are looking for ways to lower their carbon footprint. For example, some green construction companies are relying more on solar energy.

The realization that many business practices have contributed to a negative impact on the environment means that big changes are coming. It takes time to change a large organization, but new start-ups have the advantage that they can consider sustainability and environmental impact before they even get started. This is good news for construction companies that want to lower their carbon footprints.

What Can Contractors Do to Lower their Carbon Footprints?

There are a number of eco-friendly construction trends that are emerging this year. They indicate that it is easier for contractors to lower their carbon footprints and operate cost-effectively. There are plenty of simple things you can do to start on the right foot, here are some tips for new businesses.

Think Ahead

Consider the effects of your construction business from end to end, not just at the beginning stages of growth. When you think about a sustainable start-up, it’s easy to focus on the initial growth of your business. You might be thinking about how you will make money and what impact your initial operations will have on the environment. You could also be thinking about how to get customers for your product or service in a way that doesn’t negatively affect the environment. All these are great, but what about when you own a multi-million dollar building for your business? Think about what sustainability looks like now and when you get to that point.

Share Space

Too many start-ups get hung up on needing their own space. Sharing space is not only economical, but it’s also more environmentally friendly. This can be done through co-working spaces, which are usually shared office spaces where entrepreneurs can rent workspace. You could also share space with a commercial kitchen in the early stages of your food business. Leveraging a dark kitchen can be a great option when you don’t have the startup capital needed to get your own space. It also helps you validate your idea and use a space that already exists.

Find Eco-Friendly Suppliers and Manufacturers

If you’re a new construction company, finding suppliers that are eco-friendly can be challenging. Thankfully, there are more and more companies offering options that are more sustainable. Whether you need packaging, a factory that uses green building best practices, or you want something fair trade to buy and sell, you can get all of these and more. As a green construction company, you will want to use green building materials. The Zebra has a great list of eco-friendly materials.

It is possible to find companies that follow green practices in their factories and offices. Another way to lower your environmental impact is to use suppliers who are as close to you as possible. This reduces your carbon footprint as well by focusing on local companies.

Consider the Lifestyle of Your Customers

When you’re starting a business, it’s important to think about your customers. What kind of lifestyle do they have? How much money do they make and how much time do they have for shopping? If you are targeting eco-conscious consumers, then you can use this to your advantage by marketing products that are made from sustainable materials and packaged in recyclable packaging. You can share stories of how your company is making other sustainable decisions, and how you buy as many supplies as possible close by to reduce your carbon footprint.

Recycle and Reuse Where Possible

A great step to becoming an eco-friendly business is to have a recycling plan. Anything that can be recycled, whether paper, wood, or plastic, should be. You can work with local agencies to find out what options you have to recycle things from your business. Recycle paper, cardboard, glass and plastic bottles and jars, metal cans, batteries, and ink cartridges. Also consider recycling electronics including computers where it makes sense. You can even create a compost bin with food waste that you can donate to local farms.

Use Lots of Natural Light

When you get your business up and going, consider spaces with a lot of natural light. If you have a lot of light coming in through windows you can use fewer overhead lights saving you money and making a positive impact on the environment. Plus, it’s also better for your health.

Avoid Plastic as Much as Possible

Avoid plastic whenever possible. Plastic is not a sustainable building material, and it’s not biodegradable. In fact, the only way to get rid of your plastic waste is through recycling or reuse. However, recycling facilities are limited in many areas and don’t always accept all types of plastics. It’s best to avoid it when possible or to use only recycled plastics or biodegradable options.

Have some inspiration about going green in all aspect of life. Views are my own.

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