5 Reasons You Should Update Your Existing Building With Submetering

Commercial buildings gobble up energy like nobody’s business – and quite visibly for that matter. It’s no wonder then that staying on the right side of the energy consumption debate is becoming increasingly important for commercial property managers.

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The following are a few interesting statistics about energy consumption by the commercial and institutional (C&I) sector, according to Natural Resources Canada:

  • Electricity (48.6 percent) and natural gas (47.3 percent) combined make up roughly 96 percent of the nearly 850 petajoules consumed by the C&I sector in 2009.
  • Electricity was the primary energy source used for space cooling (86 percent of space-cooled establishments) and water heating (53 percent of establishments).
  • Energy intensity by year of construction has generally increased over time, from 0.84 GJ/m2 in the 1920–1959 period to 1.38 GJ/m2 in the period 2000 and later.

In light of the above figures, we explore below five reasons why updating your existing commercial building with submetering is a crucial milestone to understanding that building’s energy use profile – in turn bringing you one step closer to setting corrective actions into motion.

1 – Avoiding Your Building’s Obsolescence

It is essential that your commercial building keep up with constantly advancing construction technology, or it would simply go obsolete.  A smart submetering system, that links a building’s energy usage to advanced remote analytical software, is one such key upgrade.

A smart building needs real-time visibility of utility usage at a granular level, to provide property managers with insights into the impacts of energy usage in terms of CO2 emissions and kWh dollars. Submetering is an example of an inexpensive way to retrofit your existing building into the future.

2 – Green Energy Goals

“Climate change is one of the greatest challenges of our time and its adverse impacts undermine the ability of all countries to achieve sustainable development.”

The UN 2030 Agenda for Sustainable Development

Of particular relevance to property managers, is goal number 7.3 under the Sustainable Development Goals section of this agenda: By 2030, double the global rate of improvement in energy efficiency.

Retrofitting older buildings to enhance their cooling and heating systems alone can serve greatly towards the above goal. A high-performance building envelope requires just a fraction of the energy required to heat the current average building. And in warmer weather, the energy savings potential from reduced energy needs for cooling are estimated at between 10% and 40%.

That’s where Hamdon comes in. Through the use of a submetering system, property managers can determine the effectiveness of an energy efficiency retrofit, such as a lighting or a heating upgrade. Submeters allow the pre-retrofit consumption patterns to be compared to the post-retrofit patterns, factoring in all variables and directly pinpointing the savings in retrofitted areas.


3 – Staying Competitive

According to a study by Harvard’s T.H. Chan School of Public Health and United Technologies, a profound positive impact on employee cognitive function can be directly related to working in greener buildings.

Among the study’s key findings were that, on average, cognitive scores were:

  • 61 percent higher in green building conditions, and
  • 101 percent higher in enhanced green building conditions

Commercial tenants appreciate the meaning of these results in terms of increased productivity levels of their employees. Submetering provides the granular data analysis needed to quickly spot energy cost savings opportunities, thereby freeing up more budget space to invest in greener building enhancements. Updating your building with submetering capabilities not only increases the value of your property, but also enhances commercial tenant retention and satisfaction.

4 – Reduction in Building Operating Cost

Property managers are under constant pressure to maintain building operating costs at levels permitting a decent return on investments. In general, an updated building is manageable at lower cost than its aging counterpart.

According to the McGraw Hill Construction Smart Market Report, updated buildings with smart systems use 20% to 40% less energy and result in 8% to 9% lower operating expenses than those with older systems. A submetering system’s capacity to increase awareness of major failing equipment, such as an HVAC unit, is vital in preventive maintenance which helps hedge considerable repair cost and energy efficiency losses.

5 – Submetering for LEED Certifications

As discussed in a previous blog post, submetering allows the property manager to record accurate energy efficiency – information enabling you to score credits towards your building’s LEED certification. This is vital because in LEED V4, the number of credits directly and indirectly requiring submetering systems has increased. Hamdon can help you score those credits, with a turn-key LEED Metering System.

Hamdon even offers you Read, Bill, and Collection services as follows:

Read: We read and record the daily consumption that each of your tenants use and bill them based on ACTUAL consumption and not a formula based on their sq. ft. The property manager, with this information, would then generate a bill.

Bill: With our billing services, we can generate tenant bills based on consumption and current utility rates.

Collection: Finally, with our read, bill and collection services, Hamdon can record usage, bill your tenants, and collect payments through our automatic payment process.

In short, we have the tools and the expertise to do the job right.  We can relieve the Property Manager of the stress and workload of tenant billing while reducing the total energy bill for the majority of your tenants while lowering your building’s carbon footprint.


Hamdon Submetering will be attending The Global Petroleum Show in Calgary, Alberta from June 12 – 14 this year. Come on over to our booth to ask us about the following:

  • Echometer production optimization equipment
  • Fann Instrument Company – Drilling fluid and cement testing equipment
  • Utility submetering for a green workplace

We invite you to redeem your complimentary access to the trade show. Click here to register online, and we will see you in June!