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Never mind the carpets

12th September 2012 Print

Businesses moving into new premises often spend more time deciding the colour of the carpets and layout of the desks than they do checking out the building’s environmental and energy rating.

But commercial property specialists say the ratings can be a good guide to the running costs of a commercial building and choosing the wrong one can have a major impact on the profitability of a business.

With 25 per cent of the country’s new non-domestic buildings failing to meet rating standards, firms could find themselves thousands of pounds out of pocket each year unless they do their homework.

The best guide for businesses is to look for offices that comply with the Building Research Establishment’s Environmental Assessment Method (BREEAM).

Chartered surveyor and PropertyDNA director Christopher Tabor urges potential tenants to take a closer look at how their new office measures up on the BREEAM scale when viewing potential properties.

“Many of us spend a huge amount of time in the workplace and our environment is a major contributor to our quality of life and sustainable office interiors can reduce energy consumption and consequently your bills, which could be worth thousands in the long term,” said Christopher.

“The ratings can also be a factor in attracting high quality tenants for whom sustainability has become an important part of their Corporate Social Responsibility policy.”

BREEAM sets the standard for best practice in sustainable building design, construction and operation and has become a comprehensive and widely recognised measure of a building's environmental performance.

The assessment evaluates a building’s specification, design, construction and use. The measures used represent a broad range of categories and criteria from energy to ecology.

All these various factors are brought together and culminate in a building being classified as ‘Outstanding’, ‘Excellent’, ‘Very Good’, ‘Good’ or ‘Pass’.

Over 75 per cent of all new non-domestic buildings in the UK qualify for a ‘Pass’ or better rating, but only 1 per cent achieve ‘Outstanding’. has created a need-to-know guide to help tenants and occupiers navigate through the process of leasing a commercial property.