water sustainability of homes

Water Scarcity and Real Estate Investment: How to Protect Your Portfolio

Water shortage isn’t just an issue in poor countries such as in Africa and Asia. It is as real in richer nations and modern states like California. The U.S. Drought Monitor, which started in 2000, monitors water scarcity in different states. In California, for example, the drought lasted from December 27, 2011 to March 5, 2019. The most intense drought was in the week of July 29, 2014, when roughly 58.41% of California suffered.

While the drought in California has a huge impact on the environment and people, it also affected the real estate industry. If water scarcity continues, there will be a delay in the development of residential and commercial properties. Property buyers will also stay away from states that are suffering from the drought. Real estate prices can collapse because of the exodus.

If the majority of your investment portfolio is on real estate, you cannot ignore this issue. Water scarcity could have a serious impact on the value of your properties. Once there is an exodus of property buyers, it can go downhill from there.

Water Tanks

Water tanks are a great way to conserve water. Homeowners can store rain or stormwater in these tanks, so they can be used during the drought season. There are plenty of systems wherein the rainwater is filtered before it gets stored in a holding tank. The stored water is mostly used around the home and garden. When installed properly, water tanks can save up to 40% of the owners’ drinking water supply.

When installing a water tank in a property for sale, make sure it’s made from durable materials such as concrete, steel, or plastic. You may also want to work with reputable water tanks companies such as Hanson Tank. This can improve the value of the property. Property buyers want sturdy fixtures in their homes.

Smart Water Technology

You can also choose to adopt smart technologies around the house such as smart water meters. These can better control the water usage of the people living in the house. Smart systems can also signal the homeowners if the household is generating too much wastewater.

Ideally, each person should only use 150 liters of water a day. But recent figures showed that a house with four family members produce 1,000 liters of water a day when it should have been 600 liters. This means that households waste roughly 400 liters of water a day. That’s more than 40% of their supposed average daily usage.

Water-efficient Plumbing Fixtures

plumbing

To attract potential buyers, you can also install water-efficient plumbing fixtures in the kitchen and bathroom. Slow-flow faucets and showerheads are great for saving water. High-efficiency toilets can also save as much as 60% of water usage. That translates to 13,000 gallons of water per year.

These toilets use only one to 1.5 gallons of water per flush. Seeing as the average person flushes the toilet around five times a day, this is a huge difference. Regular toilets use between five and seven gallons of water per flush.

Landscaping Measures

The term xeriscaping refers to the efficient use of landscaping measures to conserve water in the garden. The basic principles of xeriscaping are to group plants with similar needs together, plant the right plant in the right place, and improve the soil through organic means such as adding compost and manure. Timely maintenance such as watering properly, weeding, and pruning may also conserve water usage in the garden.

If you are improving the curb appeal of your real estate property, you can also choose low-water demand plants. Succulent plants are a great alternative because they don’t require watering every day. Low-water demand plants also have fewer insect and disease problems.

Drip Irrigation System

Potential property buyers would also love to see a drip irrigation system installed in the garden. Drip irrigation has the best potential to save water in the yard because the water drips directly to the root systems of the plants. This minimizes evaporation. When you water the plants from the surface of the ground, you need to use a lot of water to get to the roots. The drip irrigation system eliminates the need to “drown” the plants in water.

When it comes to a drip irrigation system, you have to set the proper schedule and monitor if there are leaks in the system. You can also choose a sprinkler system if you have a large flat area that needs substantial water. These are your best choices instead of using a garden hose.

Now more than ever, it is important to install water-efficiency and drought-resistant measures in your real estate properties. Potential buyers are more likely to buy a property with these measures already in place. Knowing they have these systems against possible drought and water scarcity puts them at ease.

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