By Barbra Murray, Contributing Editor
Gainesville, Fla.–Traffic2Revenue Inc. is providing an apartment search service for renters in Gainesville and Orlando, Fla., who place a premium on dwelling in environmentally friendly communities. The company’s SwampRentals.com and OrlandoApartmentLocator.com search engines allow apartment hunters to seek out multifamily properties based on green amenities and accommodations.
“Gainesville is a very environmentally conscious town–and it’s not a political issue, it’s just the way people live,” Pete Zimek, president and CEO of Traffic2Revenue, tells MHN. The progressive student population is propelling the green movement in Gainesville, and SwampRentals.com is providing the city’s only web-based search tool that helps isolate the greenest of green apartments.
Users can conduct searches based on the traditional criteria–price, apartment size, pet policies and the like–but they can also hunt for properties with Energy Star-rated appliances, energy efficient lighting, U.S. Green Building Council LEED certification and other such green elements. “There are properties in Gainesville that have community gardens and that is what people want.”
For Orlando renters, OrlandoApartmentLocator.com offers the same service and, like SwampRentals.com, it carries the distinction of being the only apartment-hunting website providing search-by-green amenities for renters in the city, according to Zimek.
OrlandoApartmentLocator.com’s Green Effort technology gives prospective renters the option to determine what types of recycling an apartment community offers and which locations incorporate such sustainable features as tankless water heaters and native landscaping. “Native landscaping is a buzzword for people who are really green,” he adds. “And tankless water heaters cut down on utility costs for tenants.”
Gainesville and Orlando apartment property owners and managers are well aware of the demand for environmentally friendly rental communities and an increasing number of them have begun to utilize SwampRentals.com and OrlandoApartmentLocator.com to highlight their properties’ green elements.
“When I go to meet managers to sign them up, when they’re asked about green, it reminds them that going green isn’t just an ethical choice; it’s a business choice,” he notes. “Something like low energy lighting, for example, can save a significant amount of money. Owners are long-term investors and low energy lighting will benefit them long into the future and it is something that is simple enough that a building manager can install it on a low budget.”
Given the strong call for green apartments in Gainesville and Orlando, the websites are proving a useful and effective tool for owners and managers of properties like The Bartram in Gainesville (pictured). “The Bartram is one of the few LEED-certified apartment communities in Central Florida and it is the only LEED-certified choice in Gainesville, and since advertising on SwampRentals.com they have seen a difference,” Zimek says. “Before, they never had 100 percent occupancy, but they got on the site in February and by June, they had a wait list.”