Sustainability

Sustainability Almost every stakeholder in real estate experiences the need to act on sustainability. Practical in all markets companies increasingly ask for Corporate Social Responsibility (CSR) towards each other. Because of this CSR is becoming more common in business. Mr. Willem Lageweg, director of MVO Netherlands, calls this a ‘chain reaction'. Some important trends that illustrate this process:

Cost control has become the most important motif to start with CSR. This development will continue with increasing speed, due to the recession we now experience;

  • Energy saving and sustainable energy are on the top of the CSR-list of companies. It is urgent, concrete, relevant in society and saves cash. Also the decreasing supplies of fossil fuels is increasingly being listed on the strategic agenda of companies;
  • More and more companies incorporate sustainability into their processes as a way to innovate en to increase turn-over.
  • Sustainability is not a basic expectation for most consumers. Consumers simply expect companies to produce sustainable and that they communicate about this open and fair. Also about the dilemma’s. 

Clients ask about the ambitions on sustainability of their suppliers, investors only want to invest when the asset is more sustainable than the existing (vacant?) real estate. Real Estate Broker agency DTZ writes in their report “The real estate supply ages: Chances for the office market” in 2010 the following:

  • “Problems are solvable for structural office supply on favorable locations. One of these solutions is making the office more sustainable. More sustainable means less risk of vacancies. This is interesting for investors because there still is little supply of sustainable offices. It is interesting for the tenants and occupants because of the cost savings. 
  • On the other hand investing in sustainability means an additional investment in an asset that often will only yield after 5 to 10 years;
  • Another solution is giving the asset a new life, for example by retrofitting of alternative reuse of the structural supply. This will ask of the authorities that they will have to change their policy in this field. Regulation for these locations and for changing the current use of buildings often are obstacles in the (re) development.”

For sustainable retrofitting and the alternative reuse of existing buildings HDP Real Estate has a strong vision. Initiatives for the alternative reuse of existing buildings must come from the market and the authorities will have to be flexible. Only thus can provide valuable buildings a new lease of life. The increase of the level of sustainability in existing buildings for HDP Real Estate stand for an increase in comfort for the occupants, lower costs and higher value. This involves not only energy use, but also to the daily use and future value of the building.