BEPA — The New Standard for Building Energy Performance.

24 Mar 2011

Last month the American Society for Testing and Materials (“ASTM”) released its Building Energy Performance Assessment (“BEPA”) Standard (E 2797-11).   This standard is expected to significantly impact the commercial real estate industry as it is likely to become a due diligence requirement in most commercial real estate transactions.  Similar to what the ASTM Environmental Site Assessment Standard (E 1527-05) does for Phase I reports, BEPA provides a standard to measure the energy performance of a commercial building.  BEPAs include the following five components: (1) site visit; (2) records collection; (3) review and analysis; (4) interviews; and (5) preparation of a report.

Why now?  As I’ve blogged about before, a number of new energy labeling, disclosure and mandatory auditing regulations are being implemented all across the country.  Many states and cities (although currently none in Michigan) have laws on the books that soon will require that building owners disclose energy data to prospective buyers and tenants (and in some cases, to the public).  The problem, however, is that prior to BEPA, there was no standard for collecting the data and ensuring consistent and reliable information.  As you could expect, energy data can be significantly skewed due to variations in weather, vacancy rates, operating hours, whether any major renovations were made, etc.  As such, without a standard, the disclosed energy data really wouldn’t tell you the full story about a building’s energy performance.  With BEPA, there is now a way to compare apples-to-apples.

In short, don’t be surprised if your prospective buyer or lender requires a BEPA together with the Phase I assessment and property condition report in the near future.

Leave a Comment Below

Leave a Reply