22 September 2010 – Building and sustainability consultant John Goddard of J Goddard and Co reveals some little known ways to make a building more attractive to tenants by using the Green Star Office Interiors Tool.

Wouldn’t it be great if building owners could find a cost effective way of making their building more attractive to tenants?
There is a really simple way that building owners can make their buildings attractive to tenants by following some of the Green Star Office Interiors Tool.

Many building owners will not have read the Green Star Office Interiors Tool, the tool that covers commercial office fit out, nor would they have been encouraged to do so.
However, if owners follow the guidance it provides and meet its requirements when setting up their building or carrying out upgrades, then simply by coming to that building tenants can achieve points towards their Green Star Interiors rating. That means a win for the building owner and a win for the tenant.

Follow are some steps the requirements of the Green Star Office Interiors Tool v1.1 , landlords in the process of setting up their building or carrying out upgrades can help their tenants achieve a better Green Star Interiors rating.

The points generally fall into two broad categories:

1.   Points achieved for the way the management of the building and tenancy are set up

2.   Points achieved for the physical attributes of the building

Some of the easiest points can be achieved by the landlord demonstrating commitment to manage the building to good environmental standards. These are specified under Eco-3 and Eco-4 of the Green Star Office Interiors Tool.

Eco-3 of the tool sets out a requirement for the landlord to set certain management standards in their building. These include:

  • Energy monitoring
  • Waste reduction
  • Water monitoring
  • Regular maintenance of HVAC & R (heating,ventilation, airconditioning and refrigeration)
  • Use of low environmental impact cleaning materials
  • Future procurement of low environmental impact consumables

The tenant may achieve up to three unweighted credit points for going to a building where the landlord has committed to these requirements.

Eco-4 of the Tool awards points to the tenant if they set up similar initiatives, however with the exception of the regular maintenance of HVAC & R. The tenant may then achieve up to a further three unweighted credit points.

These are relatively simple points to achieve, but they require cooperation between the landlord and tenant, as in fact do many things if the building and tenancies in it are to optimise their sustainable performance.

Points hunting should not be what achieving a Green Star rating is about, it should be about a tenant setting up their premises to be healthier and have a lower impact on the environment. However tenants I know who have achieved a Green Star Interiors fit out are extremely proud, whatever the rating, as usually they have had to struggle for the last few points. This is win, win, win, for the tenant, the building owner and the environment.

Some examples of “Points for Turning Up” include:

# Points achieved will be based on both landlord and tenant combined initiatives.

NOTE: Points achieved will depend on meeting GBCA requirements.
 
Interestingly, some of the areas where points can be gained are simply a matter of doing upgrade works in a particular way, such as specifying the appropriate paint quality or carpet type or light fittings and controls. Often the current best practice for carrying out work will actually meet their required standards of Green Star.

I recommend building owners and their advisors familiarise themselves with the Green Star Office Interiors Tool and see for themselves how to make buildings more attractive to tenants seeking space, who will also want to achieve a Green Star Interiors fit out.

This is a great way of showing that as an owner you are Green aware, and that your building can attract and accommodate a Green thinking tenant.
 
 
Contact John Goddard at www.jgoddardco.com