Magazine article Journal of Property Management

Why Irem Started a Sustainable Property Certification

Magazine article Journal of Property Management

Why Irem Started a Sustainable Property Certification

Article excerpt

By now, everyone has heard of LEED, the successful green building certification system from the U.S. Green Building Council (USGBC). In some markets, a property is not considered Class A unless it is LEED-certified-and sometimes LEED Silver or better. USGBC has done a remarkable job of spreading the certification's reach and influence in the real estate market. No doubt, LEED is the premier recognition program for sustainable properties.

Then Why Did IREM Come Along and Create a Certification?

For one, LEED is not in the cards for many properties. Smaller buildings, or those in smaller markets, will likely never attain LEED. An average LEED certification runs anywhere from $20,000 to $60,000, depending on size and complexity. You have to hire a consultant, or several. You have to make staff available for the certification process. You must engage busy tenants. Perhaps make capital improvements.

In some cases, these costs make sense-to meet tenant or owner demands, to remain competitive or to maintain your property's status and justify its rents. For others, though, the cost-benefit analysis does not shake out, even if you have a sustainable, energy-efficient property. Only about five percent of the buildings in the U.S. have LEED certification. LEED is elite, as it should be.

What is the IREM Certified Sustainable Property Certification?

Quite simply, the certification allows your nonLEED buildings-and your hard-working teams- to get the recognition they deserve. Sustainability is no walk in the park. It requires learning new skills and constantly maintaining optimal property performance. More often, in more markets, it means complying with regulations. Having the IREM plaque on the wall means something.

What Does it Mean?

An IREM Certified Sustainable Property is recognized by a community of 19,000 global real estate management professionals who are top in their field. …

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