Zerv Team Jan 18, 2022 1:48:54 PM 6 min read

Leading Properties to Greener Pastures with Updated Access Control

According to IEA, buildings and building construction account for over a third of global energy consumption and about 40% of CO2 emissions.  

Even modest improvements in efficiency and utilization can have a direct, meaningful impact on our planet—and translate to a big impact on your bottom line. For owners and managers of portfolios of any size, the easiest path toward minimizing your carbon footprint and improving your ROI might be found in a surprising place: your access control system. 

Low-Hanging Lightbulbs 

At this point a lot of the low-cost, high-impact moves for efficiency and sustainability have already been made or are in the process of adoption. You can only install so many high-efficiency appliances and lightbulbs before you start running out of the low-hanging fruit. 

But the realm of access, security and building usage data is one area of property management and development that has largely gone overlooked. It remains an area where lots of progress can be made with minimal investment. 

The world of access control represents billions of technology and infrastructure that have experienced relatively little innovation and improvement over the last several decades. That means the entire industry is ripe for development and optimization. The trick is to find a way to adopt cutting-edge access control capabilities without breaking your budget or waiting through a painfully long installation process.  

Fortunately, it’s never been easier to get all the features of a brand new, state-of-the-art access control system by enhancing your existing infrastructure. 

Make Going Green Good for Your Green 

Reducing waste and your carbon footprint is reason enough to take steps to go green with your properties. 

But there’s another major reason to shift to smarter, more efficient buildings by enhancing your existing access control system: it just makes sense for your bottom line. 

Less Waste = More Savings 

The most obvious advantages to improving efficiency via an access control enhancement are the immediate and long-term reductions in waste.  

An enhancement offers huge savings over a conventional system replacement, in large part because it massively reduces the amount of waste in hardware and manpower required to execute. Instead of tearing out dumpsters’ worth of wiring, reader, credentials and controllers over the course of weeks or months, you can keep all that capital investment and simply upgrade it with a compact, easy-to-install adapter in a few moments.  

There’s also a significant long-tail savings benefit to this approach. Bringing your legacy access systems into the ‘smart’ era empowers them to send valuable real-time data about how, when and where your portfolio is being used. That data can be fed into your BMS, translating to higher efficiency and lower utility bills. You no longer have to guess when to turn on the heat, cut off the lights, or put an elevator  in standby mode: your enhanced access control system can tell you exactly when to activate or deactivate them. 

Green Building Incentives and Tax Credits 

There are hundreds of local, state and federal incentives to work toward greener buildings in the U.S. alone. And they’re poised to get backed by a big boost from Congress: the Build Back Better program has a tentative $320 billion set aside for clean energy infrastructure and efficiency. A large portion of that allocation comes in the form of tax breaks for greener building investments. 

An access control update can help your building reach certain efficiency thresholds required to qualify for various incentives with smarter data and utilization. And depending on where your properties are located and what they’re used for, some or all of the cost of the enhancement can be written off as a tax credit or deduction. 

Building Certification and Credentials 

Adopting smarter access control technology can help your properties qualify for important and prestigious certifications and awards for more efficient and responsive buildings. The list includes  

And there’s dozens more niche or situational certifications that reward smarter buildings and reducing your carbon footprint.  

Earning these credentials often requires lengthy, expensive investments. But enhancing your access control infrastructure is a fast, cost-effective way to improve your qualifications and improve efficiency. 

Competitive Advantage 

Making your properties greener also has the added benefit of making your portfolio more attractive to tenants. Residential and commercial renters alike are increasingly looking for places that prioritize the environment to call home. 

61% of renters are willing to pay more to stay in greener, more sustainable buildings. And greener buildings earn almost 10% higher occupancy rates

An access control enhancement brings you closer to a smarter, greener building—and dramatically improves your tenant experience along the way. It’s the perfect double-dip to attract more business and stand out from the competition.