Commercial building deep-energy retrofits provide substantially greater energy savings—often reducing a building’s energy consumption by up to 50 percent—than traditional retrofits. Yet they offer more than just a low utility bill. When planned and executed properly, a deep retrofit can yield improved employee health, productivity and satisfaction; bolstered sustainability leadership and reputation; access to tax, finance and entitlement subsidies; improved risk management; reductions in non-energy operating costs; and higher occupancies, tenant retention, rents and sales prices.
Nearly all retrofit stakeholders can tap into these value streams, including architects, contractors, developers, facility managers, building owners, occupants and others. Yet building professionals often ignore many of these additional values; they tend to focus on energy-cost savings alone to justify investment in new green buildings or deep-energy retrofits of existing buildings.
Building designers and managers who are able to articulate the full value of deep-energy retrofits to developers and owners deliver more value to their client; help the built environment reduce its carbon footprint; and can potentially drive greater investment in energy-efficiency retrofits by better articulating risks, lowering the hurdle for returns, and developing a more complete accounting and picture of those returns (which are often calculated on the basis of energy costs alone).