As a commercial property owner, attracting and retaining business tenants is critical to maintaining a profitable portfolio. And while one study suggests office vacancy rates are on the decline, ensuring your office rental space remains occupied will be a constant struggle.
One way to mitigate this risk is by integrating a raised access floor (RAF) system into your new build or retrofitting your existing building. Rather than routing all of your various building services – HVAC, cabling, plumbing, etc – over a suspended ceiling, RAF employs a raised floor over an empty pressurized plenum void through which these services are routed. In turn, you’ll not only have much easier access to these services, but open the door to new possibilities for building flexibility, as well as being able to add an underfloor air distribution that costs less to operate and delivers vastly improved occupant comfort.
The potential energy savings and occupant comfort improvements provide commercial building owners with a unique competitive edge over other properties, arming you with the potential to reduce your space churn by as much as 50%.
Let’s take a look at how a raised access floor system can help you attract more tenants to your rental property and keep your vacancy rates low.
What Makes an RAF System Attractive to Tenants?
Property managers and owners of commercial buildings with low vacancy rates are able to successfully do so because they understand the pain points of their tenants. For most businesses, keeping operational costs in check while retaining their employee talent are two ongoing challenges.
A such, the cost savings and occupant comfort benefits of a raised access floor can be a major selling point to a prospective tenant. Their energy bills will be lower, reducing the pressures on their operational budgets. In addition, they’ll be able to offer their employees the type of workspace comfort and quality few others can math, which will help to keep their employee retention levels in line with business goals.
Employee Health and Wellness
Employers have always struggled with employee turnover. But with retention rates at their lowest levels in 10 years, business owners are increasingly coming to understand that there is a strong correlation between health & wellness and employee engagement. The fact that the U.S. corporate wellness market has grown so large – expected to reach $11.3 billion by 2021 – is a testament to the importance of promoting a healthy work environment.
A raised access floor system is an important steps towards obtaining WELL certification for your building. Showing potential tenants that your building meets, or even exceeds the industry standard of occupant health and comfort can be enormously helpful in attracting businesses committed to offering healthy work environments to their employees.
How does raised access flooring achieve this? There are several ways:
Raised access floors allow you to use an underfloor air distribution (UFAD) system to deliver HVAC services. UFAD introduces clean air at floor level, displacing harmful particles and toxins up and away from the occupied zone for dramatically improved indoor air quality.
As well, UFAD also allows users to have greater localized thermal control over their immediate area, leading to greater thermal comfort. Not to mention the fact that UFAD improves ventilation effectiveness by 20%, meaning greater and closer access to fresh airflows than traditional overhead systems.
Because it requires less energy to use, UFAD systems are substantially quieter than overhead air distribution systems.
And finally, a raised access floor mean you can do away with suspended ceilings and offer taller spaces with significantly more natural light.
Competitive Tenant Energy Costs
Businesses have always struggled with trying to control rising operational costs. Studies suggest that energy prices are likely to rise by 30% over the next five years, which will put enormous strain on small- and midsize business operating budgets.
As With a building that features raised access floors and underfloor air distribution, however, you’ll be ideally situated to offer prospective tenants energy cost savings of 30% or more. Since UFAD relies on a significantly reduced amount of duct-work infrastructure, there is less air resistance to overcome, so blower fans can run on far less electricity.
Plus, UFAD introduces air into a room at floor level, using natural convective currents to drive airflow towards the ceiling. This means that tenants will only have to heat or cool the first six feet of the space, instead of having to shoulder the cost of conditioning the entire air volume as is the case with a traditional overhead system.
Attract Tenants with a Raised Access Floor and Underfloor Air Distribution System
Raised access floors offer unmatched flexibility, health & wellness options, and cost savings potential to business occupants within your building. Being able to offer these benefits to prospective tenants not only offers them a valuable solution to their business challenges, it also puts you at a competitive advantage while ensuring your vacancy rates stay low.
AirFixture is a recognized industry leader providing innovative underfloor air distribution products and solutions for office buildings, casinos, event spaces, and government facilities around the world. Contact us today to speak to a UFAD expert and learn how this revolutionary system can deliver unrivaled air quality and significant energy and operational cost savings to your facility.