What is NABERS?
NABERS stands for National Australian Built Environment Rating System. As the name conveys, this rating scheme measures and ranks the performance of existing buildings in Australia in the areas of energy efficiency, water efficiency, waste management and indoor environment quality. NABERS has been active for over 10 years now as a national scheme which is being managed by the NSW Office of Environment and Heritage (OEH) on behalf of Commonwealth state and territory governments.
The rating system uses measurements of existing building performance and consumption metrics using verified documentation and information like utility bills and on site measurements. NABERS rates a building from 1 to 6 stars where the 6 star rating means a leading building in environmental performance.
In today’s world of business, this has become an essential step for those in the property industry, as it exemplifies good management style.
The rating that is given by EcoCertificates is compiled from highly accurate data obtained by our assessor, which then enables you to be issued with a certificate with a rating of the building.
How does the ratings work?
NABERS rating is available for the following classes of buildings in Australia:
- Shopping Centres
- Data Centres
- Residential housing
NABERS can be awarded for the base building, whole building or a tenancy. The rating relies on actual consumption figures using 12 months of documented evidence like utility bills. The rating method matches this information versus the floor area of the building under certain assessment protocols. This awards a star rating from 1 to 6 to the building which reflects how efficient building design and operation is to manage the use of energy and other resources and how the greenhouse emission of the building is comparable with the other buildings. Use of green power electricity is being recognised in the NABERS rating tool and can be utilised to lower the overall greenhouse gas emission of the building and improve its star rating.
How does NABERS benefit your business?
A NABERS accredited rating has a number of financial benefits in the form of reduced operating costs, increased value, increased rental income and reduced vacancy rates.
Generating a NABERS rating with EcoCertificates can further provide you with positive market recognition, as a business owner or developer operating in a manner beneficial to the environment, and your business, certified by government authority.
The newer a development is, and the more sustainable it is, it will likely attract and retain office or housing tenants who value such superior environmental practices. You can effectively use your NABERS rating from Eco Certificates, in your marketing, from the development process to the completion of your building project. Most essentially, a NABERS rating from Eco Certificates does just more than just give your building a star rating, it helps provide a healthier and more productive work environment for employees in a shared office space, because we can ensure that as a business, you retain high performance and quality while operating sustainably.
NABERS accredited Assessors
The NABERS ratings can only be conducted by a NABERS accredited assessor, who has completed a number of technically proficient courses and exams to ensure the utmost level of understanding. Assessors are trained and certified professionals who can perform a NABERS assessment and rating and issue a certificate. Training, exam and accreditation is provided by the NSW Office of Environment and Heritage (OEH) but the assessors work independently of the OEH in commercial market to perform NABERS ratings. Individuals need to first meet strict criteria of prior knowledge and expertise, undergo technical training, be successful in theoretical and practical tests and satisfy the requirements of the NABERS national administrator under two supervised ratings under the scrutiny of the OEH NABERS auditors.
Since the NABERS scheme addresses existing buildings, accredited assessors must be familiar with the existing building systems and operations and be able to verify and audit the consumption information and documents of these buildings in the related areas of assessment. For each NABERS rating, at least one site visit is required by the accredited assessor to the building to confirm the data and ascertain the adequacy of information for a formal rating. At Eco Certificates we can guarantee our independent assessors have met these requirements, along with having a number of years of experience in the management and assessment of buildings and development projects.
A NABERS certificate is a certified rating document which is being generated after an accredited assessor completes an accredited rating. The typical time to complete a rating and obtain a NABERS certificate is 6 to 8 weeks. A NABERS rating can be used for a variety of schemes and benefits including Commercial Building Disclosure (CBD), NABERS Commitment Agreement, Energy Savings Scheme, City Switch or for attracting a government agency as tenants. The process of obtaining a NABERS certificate have the following steps:
- A NABERS accredited assessor is engaged to rate the building
- Site visit, data collection and rating calculations are completed by the assessor
- Rating application is submitted to the NABERS national administrator by the assessor
- Upon successful outcome of reviews and data verification, the national administrator issues a NABERS rating certificate
NABERS certificates have a validity period of 12 months. After 12 months the certificate should be renewed using the past 12 months of usage data to enable the building owner to continue the advertisement of the rating.