January 30, 2018

Building Assessments – A Roadmap for Facility Savings Over the Long Haul

The key to successful building management is long-term planning, and no long-term planning can be successful without an accurate baseline of information as a starting point. The best way to obtain that information is via a professional building assessment, a relatively inexpensive tool that’s critical to making the best use of available dollars and accurately predicting facility maintenance and repair costs, says John Semtner, FSB’s Principal for its Civic Market.

For clients large and small, FSB’s architectural and engineering teams serve as the detectives who discover and summarize vital information about a building’s complex systems, reviewing the mechanical, HVAC, electrical and fire protection systems, along with the structural integrity, overall condition and energy usage. Code compliance, facility access and security issues are also identified during these reviews. The end result is a comprehensive report, or “road map,” containing essential information that helps individuals and companies make key financial planning decisions.

FSB’s assessment teams typically include a combination of architects and engineering specialists, including civil, electrical, mechanical, structural and fire protection, tailored to the client’s specific needs.

early start for oklahoma capitol architecture workWhy Building Assessments are Critical
“If you have data on your building that’s missing, inaccurate or out of date, that’s going to lead to bad decisions and bad outcomes. It’s as simple as that,” Semtner says. “We help put the pieces together, so these decisions are informed. For example, if you’re going to buy a building and the price is $5 million, but the assessment shows the building needs $2 million in repairs, you can take that into account when you’re negotiating a final price. The data also can help determine whether it’s more fiscally sound to purchase a new building or to remodel and expand an existing one. We not only find out what the problem is, we also find a solution or options; and then we help the client negotiate all these issues.”

Planning for the Future
Planning for future repairs, maintenance and operational needs is the second critical purpose of facility assessments, both for individual buildings and multi-facility sites such as college campuses. Through relatively inexpensive site assessments, “We are able to give clients comprehensive 10-year cash flow figures on what they can expect to spend on repairs, code compliance, security, utilities and any other anticipated expenses. We also provide building life cycle cost evaluations that can support their planning for up to 20 years. Once their current, mid-term and long-term needs are identified, then we can help them work those anticipated expenses into a long-range timeline to keep their buildings operating smoothly and efficiently,” Semtner says.

Some other ways building assessments help facility owners:

  • Redesigned interiors and safer buildings boost employee productivity, security and satisfaction.
  • Buildings that are up to code, properly accessible and in good repair greatly reduce an organization’s legal liability.
  • FSB’s “Energy Dashboard” report provides ways to lower energy consumption, integrate controls and security, and add green design elements that further reduce costs.
  • In a crisis situation, FSB’s assessment teams can also address emergency issues with structural integrity, temperature/humidity, fire protection and security systems.

Why FSB is the Way to Go
FSB’s 160+ architects, engineers and interior designers are able to problem-solve, consult and respond quickly to any type of situation, drawing upon their literally hundreds of years of experience with every type of building scenario and assisted by the fact that all staff are located in one central office. “No matter what the situation is, someone in our office has seen it, and the more complex the building, the better a fit we are because of that expertise,” Semtner says. “We’re very hard to stump.”

To learn more about how FSB building assessment services can benefit your company, contact John Semtner, Civic Market Principal, at jsemtner@fsb-ae.com or (405) 840-2931.

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