How to Get the Most Out of Your Submetering Solutions
Scott Beneteau, VP, Sales at Enercare and Omar Salihbegovic, Associate Designer, Buildings – Electrical at MMM Group joined us at The Buildings Show in 2015 to talk to developers, contractors, and builders about the growing trend of mixed-used developments, getting the most out of your submetering solutions and planning for success.
In their webinar (which you can watch here), Scott and Omar provide an overview of:
- Trends in Mixed-Use Developments
- Submetering design for best results
- How to communicating billing plans effectively to clients
There has been a push over the last few years to build more mixed-used developments to meet the demands of the growing number of people wishing to live downtown, especially in cities like Toronto. One benefit of mixed-use buildings is the number of functions they serve for the people that use them. For developers, this means a better use of land and more revenue. However, because these tenants use the buildings for different purposes, it means planning early so that your submetering solutions provide the best return for them.
Utilities Consumption Varies by Space
In any one of these mixed-use buildings, you are likely to find a combination of the following types of spaces:
- Rentals (residential)
- Shared facilities
These mixed spaces use energy, however, in different quantities and at different times throughout any given day. A commercial office uses the bulk of its utilities Monday to Friday during traditional business hours, but rarely during weekends. Condo, rental or hotel tenants may consume more energy in the mornings, evenings and weekends, yet less during the day. Shared spaces such as lobbies, corridors and parking garages are always consuming energy. So how do developers make sure that the submetering solutions provide the most efficient outcome for the developer? How do they communicate those plans to tenants and reassure them that they are paying only for what they use?
Plan Early for Success
Demand for metering design in mixed use developments has changed over the last few years as these spaces grow more complex. In his part of the webinar, Omar shares his experience working on a variety of projects through case studies, highlighting both their successes and cautionary tales. He warns that costs and complexity rise depending on when metering design consultants are included in the planning stages. Engaging developers, builders, project managers and designers early on will result in:
- a more efficient use of meters
- needing fewer meters
- cost savings in the plan
- a simplified way to allocate consumption use based on the tenants actual usage
The alternative is, as Omar would say, “a metering designer’s worst nightmare”.
It’s important to note that not every space can be metered so cost sharing formulas should be discussed early on as well and simplified for everyone involved. Scott cautions that everyone needs to consider the lifecycle of submetering agreements. In the webinar, he explains the need for clearly worded agreements, planning for situations that can affect agreements, and the role project managers play in explaining program benefits and managing relationships.
Watch this free webinar to hear Scott and Omar talk in more detail about technical submetering design solutions, requirements and best practices, billing and case studies for mixed-used developments.