Navigating the Post-Pandemic Green Building, Part 2

Builders must provide buyers detailed information about their green homes. 

In addition to assisting and guiding homeowners in establishing green building priorities at the beginning of a project, contractors who can provide homeowners with a valuable, comprehensive packet of information at the end of construction will have a competitive advantage in the next few years.

The responsibility and ability to do so cannot be left solely to the contractor, however. Project consultants/designers, architects, and engineers must provide data to the contractor in a way that can be easily incorporated into the information for the homeowner/building owner at the end of the project. The task of creating a comprehensive information packet needs to be negotiated into the project, if the contractor is to remain profitable.

Engaging the client

Project consultants and other specialists must provide data to the contractor in a manner that can be easily incorporated into information given to the homeowner at the end of the project.

Too often, the effort and costs of creating a complete and comprehensive set of product/equipment manuals and information about an Internet of Things (IoT) products in a building are considerable.

When this is not considered in the cost of the construction contract of the building, it can significantly affect the bottom line of a project. On substantial non-residential construction, such as airport projects, these costs can run into hundreds of thousands of dollars.

Data Delivered Right

The days of providing print versions of a stack of equipment manuals or a CD-ROM with hundreds of PDFs to satisfy a data delivery requirement are ending. For example, more sophisticated corporate clients for hotel/resort projects and some federal government endeavors are beginning to require information to be provided in a way that can be easily integrated into their digital building management and operation systems.

This will happen at a different scale for custom home projects. But savvy homeowners are beginning to realize the value of this information in managing their home. They want contractors who can adequately—and correctly—provide it.

Green building contractors who can clearly request information in certain formats from each project consultant will be getting ahead of the game, and more efficiently and effectively create information packets for their clients. It is unfair to leave the responsibility of developing the information package solely to the general contractor.

A system of information management must be created that benefits all building industry project members. It also requires us to be able to successfully communicate this to homeowners/building owners, who may not understand the value of this at the beginning of contract negotiations but will benefit form it after the completion of construction. 

I will be writing further about how current developments in computer software will assist with creating, collecting and presenting this valuable building information to the homeowner/building owner in future articles.