Green Real Estate Checklist for the Holidays

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Ahh, the holiday season is now officially upon us.  Thanksgiving is less than a week away yet it seems like we are all busier all of a sudden. That said, there are a few simple things to do before the end of the year to maximize any green programs in your area that may be ending.

[Since time is short, I’ll include how much time you should spend on each]

15 Minutes

1. Check all rebate programs in your area (DSIREUSA.ORG is a great starting point) and see:
a. When the programs expire.
b. How much money is left.

2. Call Lowe’s, Home Depot or other big home improvement stores and speak with the Sales Manager. Find out:
a. What discounts they can offer you for your green projects.

(‘What’ is always better than ‘Will’ when talking to a store person.  The former is         assumptive and the latter is a request)

b. What other incentives can they give you? (Free delivery, etc.)

30 Minutes

1. Identify and contact the City Managers Office in your market.  Ask them:

a. What incentives are they able offer you for projects that begin prior to the new year.
b. Do they have grant money for green that is expiring before 12/31/2010?

2. Answer these fundamental questions about green to prepare for next year:

a. Am I prepared to deal with any new green building codes/regs in my area?
b. Do I know when any of these proposed regulations may start?
c. What green features do my end buyers/renters want in a home?

d. How am I answering them?

e. Can my team talk intelligently about green and/or have we even defined it for             ourselves yet?

60 Minutes

1. Recruit and hire an intern in the next 45 days. There are plenty of students who would love to be your unpaid ‘green’ intern next semester..  How do I know this?  I get called from students all the time looking for this.  I have 2 unpaid interns as we speak. These students can be an invaluable FREE resource for your business.

2. Watch a few YouTube videos on green building.  Most YouTube videos are 10 minutes long so that’s 6 videos.  That should give you a brief overview of materials, building envelop, etc. so that you can utilize this knowledge in the future.

There, that’s three and a half hours of total time over the next 45 days to get you prepared to handle green in your investment business next year.  Make no mistake- green is here and for investors right now it’s an opportunity.  Very soon it will become an obligation so you should start preparing now.

Photo: StarMama

About Author

I help real estate investors increase profits and property values through a variety of green strategies. I help clients find hidden rebates, tax incentives and credits to maximize returns on any property.


  1. Hey Jim

    I completely agree. I’ve hired 14 interns to date to help me out in my real estate wholesaling business. They sort through all of my calls, put up my bandit signs, post my craigslist ads, etc.)? I used to go at it non-stop for 12-16 hours a day. When the amount of calls and emails started piling up for my business, I decided to hire some interns and have them do all the day to day tasks and teach them how to run their own wholesaling business. Hiring interns has freed up a lot of my time and allowed me to focus on the most important things. I pay my interns on a commission base (20-50% of the profits of the deals that come through them).

    I have a recently been helping other people hire their own interns by giving them all the files and resources that I use to hire and manage my interns (job descriptions, interview script, email templates, list of tasks, etc.) I’d be more than willing to share any and all these files with you or anyone else that desires them.

    Let me know!

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