REAL estate developers should adopt sustainable practices in their projects, including the use of renewable energy, in response to increasing demand from home buyers.
Imperial Homes Corp. (IHC) President and CEO Emma M. Imperial said there is strong demand for housing that incorporates renewable energy. The company has incorporated solar panels in housing units at its Via Verde project in Sto. Tomas, Batangas, allowing residents access to renewable energy.
“The people living there are able to earn income from the solar electricity because now they can do it because it’s cheaper,” Ms. Imperial told reporters on the sidelines of a Lamudi media roundtable last Oct. 18.
She noted some residents even use the “extra energy” in their homes for side businesses selling meals to workers at nearby factories.
“It empowers the housewives… They start learning how to use the solar (power) by making businesses. They make… home-cooked meals and they deliver it to factories. They start even making iced candies. They can make P3,000 a month because of iced candies. For home cooked meals, some of them earn as much as P6,000 to P9,000 a month.. and they are only paying, for the houses, P7,500 a month, so they make money,” Ms. Imperial said.
With the solar panels, residents also save on their electricity bills. Ms. Imperial noted residents pay between P11 to P100 a month with 1.2-kilowatts of solar energy, which is enough to power light bulbs, a washing machine, an iron, and three electric fans.
Recently, Ms. Imperial noted residents using solar power are also installing air conditioners in their homes.
“The know-how is now being experienced by them and they are even better than us now… It’s more discovery as we build this solar-powered community, so I tell everyone, it provides inclusive growth.. This is the thing that provides inclusive growth to the low-cost housing community,” she said. — V.M.P. Galang