Property Value Creation

Property Value Creation

Increase the value of assets through responsible development, management, and capital improvements.

We recognize that our assets and business practices have an impact on the natural environment.  We share a responsibility with our property managers, tenants, and communities to make balanced, responsible decisions that create value for our environment, our society, and our business.

Goals & Objectives

Operations & Resources

Operations & Resources
Operations & Resources

Our operators are the single greatest influence on the performance of our properties. We take great care to appoint, engage, and monitor their activities.

Goal: Reduce energy of like-for-like assets by 20% over their hold period.

Monitoring & Management

To provide our third-party operators and asset managers in the Core Fund with actionable information about asset performance, we utilize a platform to import and monitor energy, water, and GHG emissions.  This platform helps our team target operational efficiencies, address spikes, and prioritize retrofits. A small percentage of assets where we do not have control of energy meters are excluded from data monitoring.  In addition to data monitoring we have developed a sustainability and environmental management system (SEMS) following the ISO 14001 standard. 

Energy Benchmarking & Certifications

Goal: To improve the energy efficiency of properties tracked by 20% over their hold period. 

In order to monitor and manage the resource use at our properties we are using EnergyPrint, a data management solution that evaluates energy and water use in commercial buildings.  By utilizing this platform to gather and analyze the resource consumption at our assets, we are able to effectively prioritize efficiency retrofits and opportunities for savings.  Finally, through ongoing trend analysis, we measure success and financial return of efficiency investments. 

Through utility monitoring we are able to easily benchmark an asset against like-type buildings and measure the success and financial return of efficiency investments.  We also use Energy Star Portfolio Manager to evaluate performance. In 2016 we performed an analysis of all student living and senior housing assets, reviewed their Energy Star Ratings, and prioritized them for certification. At this time, only our student and senior housing portfolios qualify for Energy Star Certification.

Residents & Tenants

Residents & Tenants
Residents & Tenants

The satisfaction and health of our tenants and residents are two of our highest priorities as a firm and are essential to the success of our assets and sustainability goals.

Goal: Achieve 100% coverage of annual third-party tenant satisfaction surveys by 2018.

Sustainable Investments

Sustainable Investments
Sustainable Investments

A key strategy of the Firm is to increase the value of our assets through sustainability-focused investments. Solar installations, retrofits on existing assets, and improved sustainability strategies on new development projects are our key priorities.

Goal: Invest $25 million into energy efficiency measures by 2020.

Certified Properties

As of December 2015, LEED or Green Globes Certified properties represented 21% of the total square footage in the Core Fund (14% of NAV). 

In order to best evaluate the environmental impact of our assets, we look to third-party certifications like the U.S. Green Building Council’s LEED rating system.  This comprehensive evaluation measures the design and construction practices of buildings and recognizes achievements by awarding levels of certification. The Marquee, a LEED Silver Certified off-campus student housing development in Orlando, Florida is a premier example of integrating environmental stewardship into the design, construction, and operation of an asset. See more about The Marquee.

When evaluating new acquisitions, we see third-party certifications as indicators of quality assets. For properties that are not certified, we utilize energy benchmarking and operation-based rating systems to pursue higher efficiency and operational excellence. We seek to increase the number of third-party certifications in our portfolio over time.

Solar Investments

The recent decreases in the price of solar production coupled with the incentives and rebates available make investment in solar attractive for many property types. Solar provides a hedge against increases in energy prices and increases asset value.

We believe that renewable energy is a key driver of value and an important hedge against rising energy prices. In 2013, we installed our first 120 kW photovoltaic system at Storage America, which meets more than 80% of the energy needs of the property. In 2015, a 128.5 kW system was installed at SpaceMax Emory. There are four main factors that influence the returns on an installation: (1) the current cost of electricity for the building, (2) availability of state and local rebates/incentives, (3) the access to rooftop sunlight and rooftop orientation and (4) duration of hold period of asset. 

We are actively analyzing each Core Fund investment and select opportunistic fund
investments to determine the economic viability of additional solar installations. Four
new solar projects are actively being pursued in 2016 and will be online in 2017.

Energy Retrofits & Audits

Tracking the energy consumption of our Core Fund allows us to target high-use properties that present the greatest opportunity for savings.  Comparing property performance to peer benchmarks provides an estimate on the capacity for annual financial savings and justification for an energy audit.  The resulting audit report details various retrofit and operational changes that have viable returns.