Having a LEED-certified building isn’t just a way to show neighbors and consumers that you care about the environment, it’s hands-down better for your business. When you put in the time and effort to get LEED-certified and maintain that certification with LEED-approved companies, you’ll see the benefits of happier employees and occupants, a healthier world, and opportunities to drive better ROI. So what is LEED certification all about? Let’s take a look.
What is LEED Certification?
LEED is an acronym that stands for Leadership in Energy & Environmental Design. It signifies that a building has been created in an eco-friendly manner with regards to design, construction, operations, and maintenance. This certification is used in countries all across the world with 1.85 million square feet being certified every day. When you see that a building is LEED-certified, you know it was designed, built, and maintained with the highest level of quality and care for our fragile environment.
Why Should Buildings Have LEED Certification?
To become a LEED-certified building, it must be built in a way that is gentle on our environment and low in maintenance. LEED-certified buildings are healthier and more productive places. They are energy and resource-efficient, and provide monetary savings in the form of increased building value, higher occupancy rates, and lower utility costs.
According to the U.S. Green Building Council (USGBC), buildings in the United States account for 38% of all CO2 emissions, 13.6% of all potable water, and 73% of US electricity consumption. However, LEED projects have been able to divert over 80 million tons of waste from landfills.
Top Benefits of Having a LEED-Certified Property
1. Reduce Energy, Resources & Operating Costs
Not only are LEED buildings environmentally-friendly to build, they also continue to save on operating and maintenance costs. From 2015 to 2018, LEED-certified buildings generated $1.2 billion in energy savings, $149.5 million in water savings, $715.3 million in maintenance savings, and $54.2 million in waste savings.
2. Increase ROI
When compared to non-LEED buildings, LEED-certified buildings tend to draw in more revenue for property owners. A study of 562 PNC banks found that they opened up 458 more consumer deposit accounts and had $3,032,000 in consumer deposit balance in their LEED-certified buildings.
3. Appeal to Tenants & Increase Property Value
Today’s eco-conscious consumer is looking for LEED-certification and is happy to pay higher rates for it. New, green buildings fill up with tenants faster than non-LEED buildings. Vacancy rates are typically 4% lower than non-LEED buildings. These buildings also tend to command higher rental rates than other buildings.
4. Provide a Better Environment for Occupants & Employees
LEED-certified buildings bring in clean air and daylight, while omitting harmful chemicals like those found in paints, stains, finishes, and more. This makes the buildings healthier for occupants and they’ve noticed. Recruitment and retention rates are increasing for employers in LEED-certified buildings and the over 2.5 million employees currently working in LEED buildings are reporting higher levels of productivity.
Why It’s Important to Make Sure You Work with a USGBC-Approved Company
The U.S. Green Building Council runs the LEED program and it’s available in over 160 countries. It’s a system that’s applicable at the global, regional, and local levels. The LEED program pushes the construction industry to do better. They demand that buildings create healthy experiences, conserve resources, and benefit the business’s bottom line.
The process addresses nine important areas through several rounds of public comments and approval from USGBC members. Based on a building’s score, it will be awarded at one of four levels of LEED-certification: Certified, Silver, Gold, or Platinum. Working through this system ensures you are officially LEED-certified.
How to Get Started
Once you’ve earned a LEED-certification, you’ll be expected to operate and maintain the building with LEED-approved companies. This includes maintenance teams and cleaners.
Integrity Services is proud to provide LEED-approved commercial cleaning services to help you achieve this goal. We only use green-friendly chemicals and wiping products. These are safer for humans and animals to breathe because they protect from chemical exposure. They also do not leave a harsh chemical scent in your space that may lead to headaches for some occupants.
If you’d like to see how we can work together, please call us today at 877-663-6766 or email us at [email protected] We’ll be happy to discuss how we can help you achieve or maintain your LEED certification!