"Money doesn't grow on trees"—or does it? As the world turns, it seems trees and the natural world they sprout from have become the currency of tomorrow. More valuable to our future than gold-backed dollar bills, endangered natural resources have applied pressure to our global economy; and the effect this squeeze is having on the construction industry is making contractors sweat. The fundamentals of how we live and how we work are undergoing a major metamorphosis today in response to decades of unchecked environmental damages. Scientists, economists, and industry professionals now know that green building is the construction industry's future; so, where do you fit into this future?

Construction is a booming global industry. At first glance, the sheer number of housing developments and skyscrapers colonizing the map does not look like the beginning of the end— but beneath the surface of stick-built residential and steel-beamed empires lies a bubble waiting to burst. Looking at the residential market alone, the demand for new-built single-family homes is higher than ever. The cost of new built has risen over $20,000 in recent years. A growing crowd of interested buyers is not the only reason: a global lumber shortage has seen prices for this basic building material skyrocket 180%. And why? Our raw, natural resources are under threat from exploitation and global warming-inspired natural disasters. From one end, forests are deforested faster than they can repopulate, meaning this once naturally renewable resource is facing species extinction across the globe.

The price of steelmaking as well has risen dramatically from 1990 till now for the same reasons. Like lumber, in the steel industry, supply struggles to meet demand. The Organization for Economic Cooperation and Development (OECD), an intergovernmental and economic organization attended by 37 countries, reports rising sea levels and floods, like the 2011 flood in Australia, make ore extraction for steel production more dangerous, costly, and in some cases impossible. Excessive mining is unsustainable and has no geological benefit to our landscapes: mining continues to destroy natural barriers and habitats. With no reversal in sight, we can expect prices to continue to rise going forward.

"With no reversal in sight, we can expect prices to continue to rise going forward."

The current construction industry is rooted in a linear economy model: take, make, waste. From a green mindset, the construction industry has long since been "dirty" and cost ineffective. Aside from a self-destructive reliance on new materials, the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) noted that the United States generates over 600,000,000 pounds of construction and demolition waste annually— much of which is usable quality materials. Like so many other businesses modernizing with the times, construction is embracing a lean construction methodology. Recycling and emphasizing used goods reduce dependence on our struggling natural resources and has created over 175,000 new jobs and counting in the United States.

It is often difficult to see our place in such a global movement. Of course, it is important to know that green construction benefits businesses on an individual level. Companies that actively follow a waste management plan save on material costs: reduce overall expenses through avoided purchase, disposal, and transportation costs. The IRS also permits registered businesses to write off materials donated to a qualified 501(a)(3) charity for significant tax benefits*. Businesses can also take advantage of further tax write-offs for used and preconditioned tools and machinery*. When you buy new, distributors instead claim the value depreciation benefit for new equipment. But as the cost of construction equipment nearly doubled in the last ten years, companies looking to expand and compete in this saturated market find that- more and more- the most viable option lies in used equipment. Global sales of construction tools and equipment are projected to hit an estimated $140 billion by 2025, with nearly 195,500 sales per year, not including the $66 billion projected in rental revenue. Not only do used equipment costs make the right tool more accessible, but recycling equipment also cuts back on over-stressed steel ore demand while supporting a burgeoning local industry.

At General Equipment & Supply, our values reflect today's trends and your business's needs of tomorrow. We are proud to be an American business founded in Upstate South Carolina and catering to our customers across the states. Our catalog of used and reconditioned equipment is available for convenient purchase online, up to 50% off the distributor's price. While consumers may question the durability of used equipment, even new equipment from the manufacturer is not guaranteed to maintain operational quality after 1 year of use. At GES we match the dealer’s 1-year warranty. All reconditioned equipment at GES comes with a 1-year operational warranty. Our prices allow you to step away from new leases and their interest fees and buy into real assets for your business. Let us help you find the right tool you need to take your business into a sustainable future.

Buy into real assets for your business, at GES.

*General Equipment & Supply (GES) is not a licensed tax professional. Information shared in this article is not intended to advise. GES does not provide legal or tax advisory services. Please consult with your tax advisor on the information shared in this article.

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