The Commercial Inspector | How Green Laws Could Impact New CRE

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How Green Laws Could Impact New CRE

 January 12, 2022 |  CRE News, Investment, Management |  real estate trends, interior maintenance, building renovation, commercial real estate tenants

Eco-friendly commercial real estate is quickly becoming more and more popular. Newer buildings are being built with the environment in mind, and older ones are being retrofitted to fit green initiatives. For a while, construction with environmentally friendly components was mostly at the discretion of the builder. However, new laws are being implemented that outline certain efficiency standards that must be met. Many are now concerned about how this will impact new projects.

A Growing Concern
Over the last few years, concern around the environment has been at the forefront of many people’s minds. Close to 80 percent say they want to or would be willing to make a change for the better. Many major companies are now making the switch to carbon-reducing practices in an effort to do their part. Warehouses, shopping centers, and multi-family properties have all started designing for the future.

Recent Laws Going Into Action
New York has been making headlines for their recent ban on gas-fueled appliances. The ban would require buildings under seven stories to use electric heating and cooking. This makes New York the largest city in the United States to enact a policy like this. Building decarbonization has also seen popularity in Boston, Los Angeles, and Denver, and it’s gaining traction in Canada’s National Capital Region. With over two thirds of voters wanting action, it’s easy to see why these bills are being passed at a quicker pace.

The Benefits of Decarbonization
There are many obvious benefits to reducing a building’s environmental impact. First, it creates a healthier environment for everyone around. Less nonrenewable resources are needed to meet energy needs, helping save those valuable reserves. There’s also less wasted material, as green buildings can easily be integrated with smart technology to better manage them. They can even save developers money, as some buildings, such as LEED-certified ones, can be eligible for financial grants. All in all, decarbonization provides benefits to each person in the construction process.

The Potential Pitfalls
With each upside, there are obstacles that need to be considered. For projects that have already started, contractors will have to go back and redo steps. This means longer completion times and added expenses that will most likely be passed down to the tenants. Older builds may be grandfathered in, but if not, they’ll need to be retrofitted. Building owners will also need to be sure that they’re following the laws correctly or risk finding themselves in trouble.

Looking Ahead
Many experts agree that we’ll see similar laws going into action in the future. After New York’s banning of gas appliances, it’s likely other large cities will follow suit. Concern over climate stability is a passionate topic that people want to see followed through. Many commercial managers have already started to update their buildings, regardless of local mandates to increase their marketability to tenants. As green technology becomes more widely available, making the switch will get easier.

A professional commercial inspection by NPI can help you know more about your building. Schedule your inspection today!

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