Commercial Building Costs

By April 28, 2014Property Management


Operating a commercial building can have significant monthly expenses. It is a challenge for building managers to reduce these monthly commercial building costs, of which the energy bills comprise a greater proportion. Proper maintenance and energy saving measures can go a long way in bringing down a commercial building’s costs without compromising on the operational efficiency.

Generally, the ratios of operating cost categories to the total operating cost are stable in most parts of the country. Total utilities including electricity, water, steam and natural gas adds up to approximately 25% of the Total Operating Costs, according to the statistics by Institute of Real Estate Management (IREM).

Retro-Commissioning to Reduce Commercial Building Costs

Altering a building’s operational timing can significantly reduce energy consumption. For example, there is no need to run the air conditioner at night, especially when the building is not occupied.

Meanwhile, as the buildings get older, the overall efficiency also starts to decrease. Energy efficient designs cease to be as efficient as they were initially. This is when a retro-commissioning process can go a long way in restoring efficiency to the intended amounts.

Steam Trap Maintenance / Replacement

Steam systems that are poorly maintained are a common issue for old commercial buildings, especially those that rely on larger boiler systems. Such buildings usually have hundreds of steam traps that regulate the condensate inside the steam system. These can get stuck open, thereby returning steam back to the boiler. The ultimate result is an excessive usage of energy.

Professional maintenance crews can work to solve these issues with the steam system and restore efficiency to previously high levels.

Optimization of HVAC Systems

Chillers and boilers consume large amounts of energy in commercial buildings. This can account to as much as 20% of the total energy costs. If your building is located in a cold region, then you’ll have to ensure that boilers work at their peak efficiency. Same goes for buildings in warm climates – their chillers should be replaced with newer, more efficient models.

Controls of Energy Management

Incorrectly programmed controls can make a building owner assume that their building is running as efficiently as possible, whereas the building may be performing poorly. It is wise to replace, or upgrade such components and reprogram the energy management system of the building; thus allowing the building to run at a peak efficiency rating.

Lower Financing Rates

The expenses of a building aren’t only limited to its running costs. Commercial mortgage borrowing costs can also form a significant part of overall operating costs. Partnering with reputable, experienced commercial mortgage brokers can ensure you arrange low cost borrowing while including the added benefit of saving you time negotiating your mortgage terms. Lower financing rates can significantly reduce the overall operating costs for all businesses and help redirect capital to fulfill a company’s individual goals.