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Why retrofit?

Are you wondering, why retrofit my building? And how do I start? Look no further. Understanding what a retrofit project is and what it entails gives you the information you need to start your own project. But what’s the first step? There are several approaches you can take to starting a retrofit project.


The most pressing reason to retrofit a building is when you are required to do so by law. Depending on where you live, your state may dictate what changes need to be made and how they should be completed. If you are trying to get ahead of the curve and do not have any impending deadlines, you’ll want to review your building’s water, electric, and heating/cooling costs. Depending on which of these three is the highest priority, you can plan each project accordingly.


Why retrofit?… Because you’re legally obligated to or likely will be in the near future

As of right now, there are no federal regulations mandating every state to reduce its carbon footprint and retrofit existing buildings. But many states and businesses have regulations mandating that existing buildings have a net-zero carbon footprint through retrofit projects.


New York City passed the Climate Mobilization Act. The Climate Mobilization Act requires that any building 25,000 square feet or larger will need to reduce its greenhouse gas emissions by 40% by 2030 from a 2005 baseline. The reduction requirement increases to 80% by 2050. As more states follow suit, retrofit regulations will make it mandatory for buildings to become more sustainable.


Why retrofit?… To benefit from a more sustainable building

Assessing your building and establishing a baseline of how sustainable it is will give you the most efficient starting point. Reviewing equipment, its age, how it’s powered, and its current condition is one assessment. Another way is to review the function of the building, understanding that certain buildings serve specific purposes, such as healthcare facilities, residential apartments, and commercial buildings. Different types of structures of course use different resources.


Our next posts will dive deep into some specific ways to retrofit your building. We’ll explore why retrofit construction is directly impacted by the industry’s labor shortage. And how tradespeople can adapt.

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