Paul Wall, DEXUS

The Tenants and Landlords Guide to Happiness was highlighted at a recent event on green leasing, Building Connections – Green Leases and Fitouts, organised by the Better Buildings Partnership, City of Sydney and the Green Building Council of Australia at DEXUS offices in Sydney on 14 August.

Chief operating officer of the GBCA Robin Mellon moderated a great insight into the changing norms of tenants and landlords who are slowly changing the game in leasing to something more sustainable and less wasteful.

Guests at the presentation
Liam Timms, Lend Lease
Beck Dawson, Investa and BBP
Kerryn Wilmot, UTS, Chris Nunn JLL

Speakers were:

  • Liam Timms, fund manager, Lend Lease
  • Paul Wall, group sustainability and operations manager, DEXUS Property Group
  • Beck Dawson, chair, BBPtenant working group; general manager corporate sustainability, Investa
  • Tina Perinotto, managing editor, The Fifth Estate
  • Esther Bailey, Better Buildings Partnership

And the consensus? Things are moving along, if not rapidly at least in the right direction, the speakers agreed.

The Fifth Estate spoke about our

work on the “Happiness Book” and how it was agreed with our collaborators on the project, BBP, that the key was to engage people on a very personal level and focus on the positive relationships that could be forged between tenants and landlords in order to break down the sense of mistrust that can exist between them. Hence the play on “happiness” and the big heart symbol that graces the cover of each chapter.

As journalists and observers, The Fifth Estate had found it surprising to discover some of the

deeply embedded practices that work against sustainable outcomes.

For instance, the practice of “make good” that requires tenants to rip out their fittings, and restore premises to their original state, only to have the landlord refit them to attract a new tenant, who might in turn want to start again.

Audience

Time to break the barriers down to change. And the best way to do that was to shine a light on current bad practices and good ideas.

Other key issues covered in the event included the way temperature controls were dealt with in some leases. Some leases were far too restrictive, speakers said, but again this was a change well on the way with more flexibility that acknowledged that the weather changed and people could adapt some variation in temperature without too much discomfort.

See our latest Tenants and Landlords Guide to Happiness chapter.