As inhabitants of this earth, it is in all our best interests to consider the numerous ways our carbon footprint is doing our home a disservice. Galvanised by the growing concerns about environmental degradation and climate change, the Green Building Index (GBI) initiative was established in 2008 to push for more sustainable building designs in Malaysia.
Across the nation, the tide of green developments is rising as developers aspire to meet the demand for this eco-friendly concept. They began investing time and funds into constructing energy-efficient buildings, substituting the use of raw materials with recycled materials in the process.
Green buildings are becoming hot property in Malaysia, which begs the question: have you ever considered living a bit more green in an effort to inflict less damage to the environment?
Although the green building sector in our country is shaping up, there’s still an impending challenge to educate and understand the urgency for this type of property before it can take root on the foundation of all construction. So what exactly makes a green building, and what are the reasons you should live in one?
What is a Green Building?
Yes, there’s a defined criterion for what counts as an ‘eco’ building in Malaysia, according to the GBI. It’s valuable information for you as a buyer, as well as for developers to be more sustainable in their architecture plans. The GBI is a useful tool for this, measured across six key aspects:
- Energy efficiency
- Indoor environment quality
- Sustainable planning and management
- Materials and resources
- Water efficiency
There are four levels of ‘green’ in the market of GBI-certified buildings—Certified, Silver, Gold and Platinum—issued by the GBI Accreditation Panel. This index serves as a trusted accreditation source for the burgeoning number of green buildings in our country.
Why should you live in one?
Who doesn’t love good quality air, low energy costs and luscious landscaping? The pros that come with living in a green building are not only practical but personal. Let’s dive right in.
1. Lower utility bills
Green buildings are designed to optimise as much natural light as possible, also reducing heat gain and elevating cooling effects. Some of these designs include better ventilation, envelope air sealing, strategic siting and window placement. With a potential decrease in reliance on electrical appliances like air-conditioning and other maintenance costs, this lifestyle would bode well for your wallet.
Some of them, such as PJ Midtown, even incorporate water-efficient fittings to reduce water consumption and detect faulty leaks. An extra step would be to install a rain harvesting system to curtail the use of potable water.
2. Superior indoor environment
Improved indoor ventilation? Don’t mind if I do. The meticulous selection of materials like low volatile organic compounds and non-formaldehyde products helps green properties to lower chemical exposure, letting residents breathe clean and fresh air.
Poor air circulation is a common culprit in building-related illnesses. Consequently, these architectural designs ensure that indoor air never becomes stagnant by controlling the temperature and wind flow. Aside from that, GBI-certified buildings also have partitions that filter sound to lessen noise pollution. Optimal airflow, cooler temperature, and acoustic comforts make up a healthier, cosy living space for occupants.
3. Lower financing options
To encourage the adoption of green buildings, many banks kickstarted their own initiatives in preferential financing for certified properties. One such example is CIMB, where you are entitled to lower funding for a list of participating residential homes. If the property you’re eyeing didn’t make the cut, maybe the preferential rates are incentive enough for you to reconsider your options.
4. Higher resale value
Right now, green buildings may seem like a novelty, but with time and education, more people will gravitate towards this property type. A SmartMarket report depicted that green building practices are expected to increase building value by 7.5% over time; while operational costs stand to decrease by at least 9%.
Being a discerning home buyer, you might find that these attractive stats prove worthy to invest in a green building property today.
In summation, if the idea of living in a green building has piqued your interest and you want in on the contemporary movement, go for it! Explore the environmentally-positive townships here in the Klang Valley and march unanimously with us toward a brighter, less contaminated future.
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