NABERS

North Sydney’s Jilly Gibson pitching for EUAs, Nightlife & Art

North Sydney has thrown down the gauntlet to its big sister over the bridge. It’s pitching to be part of
the annual Vivid LIVE festival in May and early June. It wants better nightlife and it’s already renamed
a plaza after one of its favourite sons: artist Brett Whiteley.

According to newly elected Mayor Jilly Gibson, North Sydney may soon also have a spate of upgraded and more valuable commercial buildings, thanks to the city’s embrace of the Environmental Upgrade Agreement finance schemes.  It wants to have EUA exemplar projects up and running by the end of
this year.

The schemes, which finance environmental upgrades to buildings through energy savings, with repayments managed through charges on local council rates, are spreading rapidly through New South Wales’ local government councils. The City of Sydney launched its first EUA recently with a $26.5 million commitment at the Frasers Property-Sekisui House development at Central Park, Broadway. Parramatta City Council is on board; so is Lake Macquarie and now, North Sydney. Soon joining the program will be Newcastle, Penrith and Wollongong councils. Continue reading

A 6 Star Retrofit, or a 2 star makeover? Napier & Blakeley can guide you through the process

Setting the benchmark for Sustainable Property Solutions

Do you want to :

Reduce your energy costs and green house gas emissions by up to 70% ?

Take your building “off the electricity grid” ?

Upgrade your 25+ year old building to 6 Star NABERS energy rating ?

Cause no disruption to the tenants during the upgrade ?

Obtain $2.1 million in Federal government funding towards the upgrade? Continue reading

Project Monitoring With Continued Due Diligence

With the complexity and size of current new developments as well as their varying funding & delivery arrangements, our National Building Consulting team is undertaking an increasing number of Project Monitoring commissions for a variety of clients.

We are seeing a current trend of acquisitions of development property from international investors partnering with local developers – and more lately, from local property companies and superannuation funds. This is coupled with major corporates wanting anchor tenancies in new developments.

Project Monitoring is distinct from both Project Management and Construction Monitoring. Its primary role is to protect the Client’s interests by identifying and advising on the risks associated with acquiring an interest in a development that is not under the client’s direct control.

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Are you managing your Energy Reporting Risk ? As come November the Penalties are harsh !

Commercial Building Disclosure (CBD) is a national program designed to improve the energy efficiency of Australia’s large office buildings.

Transitional Provisions Ending this Year

The current transitional provisions of the CBD program that require only a NABERS base building energy rating to be disclosed will end on 31 October 2011, with full mandatory disclosure requirements commencing on 1 November 2011.

From 1 November 2011, the Building Energy Efficiency Disclosure Act 2010 (BEED Act) requires corporations selling, leasing or subleasing certain large (>2000sqm) office spaces to register a full Building Energy Efficiency Certificate (BEEC), not just a NABERS rating.
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Muscle up and wrestle your tax back…

It’s here again, the end of the financial year, a time for collating all of the financial happenings over the past 12 months and thinking about new beginnings from 1st July.  Or as is the case for many in the property industry, preparing accounts and reports for share holders, as it is just the beginning of the reporting period.

Napier & Blakeley are the original experts in property depreciation deductions – we will make sure that you do muscle up and receive the maximum benefits available to you through depreciation and capital allowances.  Our experience is second to none in the market place and our track record speaks for itself.  So let us wrestle on your behalf.

It’s at this time every year that we provide an update of the legislative goings on in the accounting area of property depreciation and over the past 12 months there have been a few. Continue reading

Buyers Beware… Investigate or Reach for your Wallet

In the last year Napier & Blakeley have undertaken more than 100 physical due diligence and capital expenditure forecast exercises with a combined value in excess of $10billion.

It’s rare to find nothing that would be considered problematic for an incoming owner, but the last few years there have been a few issues that have become commonplace through either lack of ongoing investment and maintenance or as a result of new market legislation.

The GFC brought substantial financial constraints to the entire economy but for property owners it brought pressures through loan to value ratios (LVR’s), reductions in value and rental income. This created a catch 22 situation where many knew they had to keep maintaining and spending capital to keep their assets compliant, relevant and therefore rentable, but were unable to directly fund or borrow funds to do so.

We recently re-analysed an asset that we had prepared due diligence and capex forecasts for a few years ago, and the list of items that we identified in our initial report were almost completely the same as now. Nothing had been fixed, maintained or repositioned. So, many years down the track the asset has fallen deeper into redundancy and therefore costs more to rectify. Continue reading

R & M Diminished

Is your ‘too good to be true’ property deal rally sustainable?
According to Napier & Blakeley managing director Alastair Walker, lack of capital post GFC has lead to a significant neglect of repair and maintenance (R&M) and Capex spend.  Having worked on property due diligence valued at plus $10B since the GFC, Napier & Blakeley has seen only nominal spend on upkeep compared with previous years.

Reduced Life Expectancy and Premature Capex
Recent technical due diligence and condition assessments have also found that the lack of R&M and Capex budgets for economic life driven plant and equipment overhauls and refurbishments has resulted in increased short and medium term Capex.

To put this in context, without appropriate R&M, major plant items may have an economic expected life of (say) 25 years, however the reduction of removal of maintenance can result in a major shortfall in expected life to around 15 years.

The Reaction
Astute purchasers have become aware of this risk and look for these patterns in their technical due diligence reporting to ensure that appropriate Capex costs are factored into the purchase price to account for a vendor’s R&M expenditure shortfalls. 

Condition assessments, maintenance reviews, energy assessments and risk weighted strategic Capex forecasts have become 2010’s essential tools for good asset and facility management and sustainable property solutions.  Continue reading

Greening the Inner Buildings

An ambitious North Sydney project intends to set a “follow me” example for the industry and demonstrate the possibilities for greening existing buildings.  Chris Larsen reports in the Property Australia Magazine Dec 2010/Jan 2011.

When the 76 Berry Street project is complete, it may not look different from the outside – but underneath will hum a world-class sustainable building.  76 Berry Street, North Sydney is the flagship project of the re-lifing program for the Local Government Superannuation Scheme’s (LGS) property portfolio. 

The program encompasses six office buildings, plus retail and industrial properties, but 76 Berry Street is the most ambitious.  “The opportunity is to take this asset to the next level and make it iconic as far as existing buildings are concerned,” says LGS property portfolio manager, Brian Churchill.  LGS had previously repositioned the 1980s vintage 76 Berry Street from what it dubs “B” grade to an “A” grade asset in 2005.  However, that refurbishment had not included a major upgrade to the building’s plant, because it was not at the end of its lifecycle.  The earlier upgrade had repositioned the building and it received higher rent because of it. 

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Tax Breaks for Green Buildings

 

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Using depreciation as a way to encourage the greening of the build environment has been a hot topic for a number of years. During the recent federal election the Labor party announced policies that included the delivery of such incentives.

Last week via their web site Labor provided a little more flesh to their approach in this area.

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CBD Legislation Update – Exclusion for Mixed Use Buildings

 

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Today the Australian government announced that mixed use buildings will be excluded from the CBD legislation for a period of twelve months and major new refurbishments will have a two year exclusion from date of refurbishment.

Following industry consultation the Australian Government Department of Energy Efficiency  and Climate Change set up an industry forum to review the implementation of the Commercial Building Disclosure legislation (mandatory rating legislation).

This group includes Roger Walker, Head of Sustainability at Napier &  Blakeley. We are pleased to advise that Roger’s advice that the legislation should exclude buildings which do not have a minimum of 75% office use has been accepted by the Hon Minister Combet.

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