April 22, 2021 / By: J. Greenwell

Mainstreet Equity: Making a Sustainable Lifestyle the Easy Option

Personal Interest, Tenant Tips, Investors, Rental Properties
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Corporate Environmental Philosophy

As Earth Day rolls around again, it's interesting to think about the differences we've seen since celebrating our first one years ago. What was once something we thought about briefly once a year has become a year-round focus as we address the environmental crises facing our world. Mainstreet has taken a unique approach to our environmental responsibility. Unlike most companies that only focus their efforts on energy efficiencies and carbon reduction at the business level, Mainstreet believes that we can do those things as well but go beyond them. We believe our industry has a responsibility that goes beyond internal carbon reduction: we believe in empowering our customers to reduce their carbon footprint as well.

Historical Environmental Strategies

Mainstreet's historic strategy of clustering our acquisitions close in proximity to one another, and in inner-city areas with access to public transit, amenities and other services has always made great business sense. It reduces transport needs for management and other staff between buildings, among other advantages. But we realized some years ago that it also provided an incredible opportunity for our customers to passively reduce their carbon footprint without sacrificing their quality of life. Usually, homeowners have much greater power than apartment renters do when it comes to reducing their carbon footprint and increasing the sustainability of their lifestyle. Mainstreet's model was about changing that – without sacrificing quality of life.

Eco-Friendly Business Model

When Mainstreet takes on a distressed property, renovates it and prepares it for long-term future use, it supports the environment by not tearing down and building new which creates a large amount of waste. We also choose environmentally-friendly building materials whenever possible, such as low-flow fixtures, LED light bulbs, energy-efficient appliances, boilers, windows, roofing, and siding. We have also implemented a variety of energy-savings programs including encouraging residents to reduce energy usage through sub-metering. 

Along with the pattern of being located in desirable inner-city locations, over the last decade, we have focused on buying properties that allow residents to maintain a comfortable vehicle-free lifestyle. This means their homes are situated near or along bike paths, close to public transit options, and thanks to our partnership with Bird scooters, even have quick access to electric scooters for much of the year. We try our best to ensure all our properties have exceptional walkability: grocery stores, schools, shopping, etc. located nearby. We continue to install bicycle racks across our properties and are looking at even more options including electric vehicle charging stations as the popularity of these vehicles rises.

Mainstreet's Carbon-Friendly Initiatives

By not just focusing on our own carbon reduction, but actively creating the lifestyle conditions for our customers to passively do the same, Mainstreet believes we not only provide our customers with more power over their carbon footprint but we also make them partners in our project to have a positive impact on the planet. Apartment dwellers often have to sacrifice some of their ability to act environmentally due to their lack of ownership, but Mainstreet's customers are our partners and it is their desire for action which has driven this strategy. No heavy lifting or thinking required.

Learn more about Mainstreet's Sustainability efforts >