In today’s market, landlords and developers are always looking for ways to improve their commercial real estate and stay ahead of the competition. One way to do this is by investing in smart buildings. Smart buildings use technology to improve various aspects of the property, from air quality to energy efficiency. In this article, we’ll discuss some of the benefits of smart buildings for commercial real estate landlords.
What are smart buildings?
Smart buildings are optimised buildings that use less energy, water, and other resources. At the same time, they can provide a better indoor environment and experience for occupants. Smart building systems include a range of technologies from energy management systems to demand control ventilation or access systems. Smart buildings are often equipped with sensors that monitor indoor air quality, thermal comfort, space utilisation etc. This information can be used to optimise HVAC performance and make other adjustments to improve facilities management and the indoor environment. In addition, smart buildings often have automated lighting controls that adjust the light levels in response to daylight and occupancy levels. By using these smart building technologies, landlords can save money and improve the comfort, health, and productivity of the building occupants.
Here are 3 benefits of smart buildings
Reduced Operating Costs
One of the biggest advantages of smart buildings is that they can lead to significant reductions in operating costs. This is because smart buildings are designed to be highly energy-efficient. For example, a smart building might have energy-efficient lighting, sensors that control the heating and cooling system, and windows that are coated with a special film that helps regulate the temperature inside the building. These features can all lead to big savings on your monthly utility bills, especially in the current climate with energy pricing, rising rapidly.
Improved Tenant Satisfaction
Another big advantage of smart buildings is that they tend to have higher tenant satisfaction rates. Better indoor air quality, more natural light, and quieter environments can be USPs for tenants when choosing a building that can help attract and retain staff. Subsequently, this leads to happier, more productive and satisfied tenants who are likely to be willing to pay higher rents and are less likely to move out at the end of their lease.
A smart building can positively influence employee satisfaction by up to 15% and enhance productivity by over 6% [Human Spaces, 2015].
Higher Property Values
Lastly, smart buildings tend to have higher property values than traditional buildings. This is because prospective buyers or renters are willing to pay more for a property that has all the latest bells and whistles. So, if you’re looking to improve your capital appreciation without the CapEx investment, smart building software and technologies can be a smart way to improve your return on investment.
A study from the MIT Center for Real Estate demonstrated that building owners received 37% higher rent for smart buildings [MIT, 2018].
How to Implement Smart Building Technology in Your Property?
As a commercial real estate landlord, you may be wondering how to implement smart building technology in your property.
One way to take advantage of smart building technology is to upgrade your existing systems or add sensors that give you more data about how your building is being used. This can support your facilities team in getting the best out of your building. Technology can also be retrofitted without the hassle of ripping out and adapting M&E in a building, reducing costs and disruption to occupiers.
By working with your tenants, you can also access greater data around building usage, in return reducing their energy bills whilst also enabling your business to reduce carbon emissions and the cost of carbon offsetting.
If your team is short on time, implementing a software solution to upgrade your existing technology can reap significant rewards, often being the best return on investment when it comes to optimised buildings. At Incube Space, for example, we offer a predictive building intelligence platform (CubeOS) that does all the hard work for you, analysing real-time data so that HVAC changes can be proactively made without the hours needed for a person to review data that is often out of date by the time it has been looked at. At Incube Space, we work with commercial real estate landlords helping them optimise their buildings, and ensure optimal indoor air quality 99% of the time, whilst reducing energy usage by up to 50%, and accelerating your journey to net zero.
The benefits of smart buildings are numerous and varied, but they all centre around one key goal: improving the tenant experience to maximise returns from your building. By making buildings more energy-efficient, comfortable, and convenient, landlords can not only attract and retain tenants but also boost their bottom line. In a competitive market like commercial real estate, any edge that landlords can get is worth considering – and smart buildings will soon be the norm so investing now will help you keep an edge and not fall behind the market.
With CubeOS you can attract high-quality tenants by offering world-class indoor air quality levels, alongside real-time reporting for both your facilities and even tenants. This data can also be used to achieve the highest smart, green and wellbeing certifications in the industry.
If you’re interested in learning more about how to get started with upgrading to a smart building, we’re happy to share our experience and provide a guide on everything you need to consider. We even offer a free indoor air quality monitoring report for spaces over 10,000 sq ft.
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