Property Management Blog

How to Make Your Commercial Properties More Energy Efficient This Winter

System - Saturday, January 26, 2013
Improving the energy efficiency of your commercial buildings will also improve your bottom line. That's because energy use is the single largest operating expense in commercial buildings, multifamily, office, industrial or retail properties and represents about a third of typical operating budgets, according to ENERGY STAR, a joint program of the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency and the U.S. Department of Energy. ENERGY STAR calculated that a 10 percent decrease in energy use could lead to a 1.5 percent increase in net operating income. For example, in a 200,000 square foot office building that pays $2 per square foot in energy costs, a 10 percent reduction in consumption can translate into an additional $40,000 of NOI. That boosts the value of the asset as well. So what can you do to increase energy efficiency? Consider some options. • Make sure occupants turn off lights when not in use. Set back thermostats in the evening and other times the building is unoccupied. • Educate tenants on how they can reduce energy costs. • Regularly check and maintain equipment to keep it operating efficiently. • Install window films and insulation to reduce energy consumption. • Consider retrofitting or replacing HVAC systems with more efficient ones. • Have an energy audit to identify areas of inefficiency.