‘Tis the Season to Budget for Energy Efficiency in the Commercial Real Estate Market

Written by: Fiona Dearth

For those in the commercial real estate (CRE) industry, spring and summer months mean the start of the capital budget planning season.  This summer, Waypoint has been busy working with its CRE partners to ensure that building owners and property managers make room for efficiency projects in their capital budgets and capture the full value that energy efficiency can bring to their properties.


At Waypoint Energy, we know that the benefits of energy efficiency don’t stop at the utility meter—they extend right to a commercial building’s bottom line. This past August, Waypoint hosted a webinar on how improved energy performance can boost the NOI and increase the asset value of a commercial building.  The seminar, Tailoring the Business Case for Efficiency to Fit Your Capital Budget, outlined the financial metrics that are more effective for evaluating the true costs and benefits of an energy efficiency project.


Emily Pearce, Director at Waypoint Energy, presented alongside Patrick Finch from Booz Allen Hamilton and Sundee Wislow from Jones Lang LaSalle (JLL) on capital planning for energy efficiency. Waypoint emphasized that it’s critical to communicate efficiency performance metrics in terms that will resonate with both tenants and ownership. Even further, Waypoint underscored the oft-ignored value of utility incentives for CRE energy projects. As Emily stated in the seminar:

When you’re talking about sometimes project costs being covered up to 70% for example, an incentive that can help mitigate that split-incentive issue, you just can’t sit by and ignore that.

To build the strongest business case for efficiency, efficiency champions should not only leverage the appropriate financial metrics to assess project impacts, but also present the proposal at the right time and in the context of other planned expenditures. In its most recent commercial energy efficiency toolkit, Waypoint Energy identifies ten actionable steps to successfully incorporate the project into your capital budget planning and obtain project funding. These steps start at the very beginning by establishing a property’s energy baseline, all the way through conducting a comprehensive financial analysis and ensuring success for smooth future efficiency project planning. If you’re interested in learning more or applying these actionable steps to your own CRE portfolio, reach out to info@waypoint-energy.com.