CoR Advisors™ News - 8/5/2011

CoR Advisors Webcast Draws 1,000+ Attendees, Featured in
Sterling, VA – CoR Advisors™ July 22nd webcast on "The Future of Green Buildings" broke all previous webcast attendance records with an unprecedented 1,008 registered attendees. The webcast also grabbed national headlines when it was featured in in an article entitled "Energy Efficient Buildings Raise Tenant Demand".

The webcast, produced and moderated by Darlene Pope, President and CEO of CoR Advisors™, featured real estate veterans Brad Molotsky, Brandywine Realty Trust; Brenna Walraven, USAA Realty; and Kevin Kampschroer, Director of Federal High-Performance Buildings for GSA.

Pope pointed out that the real estate industry is caught in a "perfect storm" of a depressed market, advances in energy efficient technologies, and a strong social and political focus on the environment. The webcast addressed whether the focus on green buildings is a trend, or are sustainability efforts in real estate becoming a permanent way of doing business.

The high-profile real estate panel discussed whether buildings were going "green" to save the environment or to save money. Green-building proponents say that green buildings attract more tenants, deliver higher rental fees, and cost less to operate. However, the industry is still divided about the value of "green" due to the cost of some of the larger equipment upgrades vs. the return on investment (ROI).

Will tenants pay higher rent for "green" buildings? Walraven said that tenants might not, necessarily, pay more in rent than market rates, but that they might expect to pay less for buildings that are not operated in an environmentally friendly way. Walraven also believes that owners are not just looking at simple payback, but they are taking into account full life-cycle costs and asking questions such as, does it make us more competitive in the marketplace and how does it support investor requirements for sustainability?

Molotsky took a more pragmatic approach, stating that Brandywine is actively implementing green-building projects where appropriate -- but that they are still looking for projects that will generate a payback of less than three years. "If it costs the company a lot of money, it would be hard to justify. But there are plenty of low-cost and no-cost measures that are easy to implement, which can and are being addressed. We are focusing our time and energy on projects where there is a combination of available incentives, cost control, and/or consumption reduction," Molotsky stated.

Kevin Kampschroer from GSA, America's largest building owner and the government's policy-making department for high-performance buildings, added, "Some things you can do because they are part of a larger picture of what would be expected in Class A office buildings. Some items have a very clear ROI, but others might be beneficial for other reasons that are harder to quantify financially." For GSA, they evaluate investments based on the overall lease term as opposed to short term ROI. For example, they would accept an 8-year payback that reduced operating expenses over a 10-year lease.

Ultimately, the panelists agreed that the components of green buildings are valuable in terms of saving money on operating expenses, making buildings more attractive to tenants, and good for the environment. It's just a fundamental way of operating buildings better.

CoR Advisors™ provides free monthly webcasts on technology and energy management for real estate owners, supported by corporate sponsorships.

"This was perhaps the best, business-related webcast I have ever attended. It was well run and went off without a hitch… but more important, the quality and value of the webcast was excellent. The presenters spoke to real issues in a candid and informative way. It wasn't fluff or a sales pitch. We are extremely happy to have been a sponsor and believe it reflects very well on our company." John Petze, COO, SkyFoundry.

CoR Advisors™ is a professional consulting firm and integrator of smart building solutions. CoR Advisors™ helps real estate owners and managers evaluate and implement technologies and energy management solutions that ultimately save money and add value to their properties.

To view "The Future of Green Buildings" webcast in its entirety, visit:

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Darlene Pope
President and CEO
CoR Advisors™

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