Assessing building health key to reviving occupancy rates

For the last 10 years much of the attention given to ESG has been focused on the E, the environmental aspects.

“We know everything about heat pumps, solar panels, you name it, but when it comes to well-being and health, the S, that’s very difficult to quantify for most asset managers nowadays,” said Felix van den Horst, CEO, Clairify.

But following the covid health crisis, the S in ESG is being given greater priority.

“After doing some initial market research here [the Netherlands] and in the UK we’ve seen that on average occupancy is 60% lower in commercial real estate in comparison to pre-pandemic levels. That’s huge,” van den Horst said.

Clairify is a platform that aims to bring tenants and asset managers closer together with a mission to create healthier buildings, a better tenant experience and more robust asset values.

“We all know the only way to get people back into the building is if the experience improves. It’s especially important post pandemic,” he said.

Clairify has developed an app that measures, analyses and reports the experience that tenants have while being in the building.

“Indoor air quality has become hugely important when you return to the office, but also thermal comfort. Is it too noisy? How is the light? All these kinds of parameters are important to engage people more in coming back towards the office.”

He added that the corporate sustainability reporting directive will add legal weight to the need to assess the well being aspects of buildings. He said that within the next two years, “if your space is not providing any added value in a sense of well-being and productivity for the tenants, I think it’s going to be a tough battle.”

Click on the video to watch the full interview or listen to the podcast below.