Nothing's shocking

The pandemic up-ended our routines, disrupted several industries and encouraged building users to rethink the spaces we once took for granted. The resulting shifts put some buildings or portfolios at risk, and demonstrate the creativity and proactivity required to adapt built assets for the needs of a dynamic world. Our respondents agree that flexibility of space and occupation patterns will be a vital part of real estate’s future, but not all are equipped to achieve it.

Adaptable assets are resilient assets

A complete picture of a building’s future performance must include its capacity for reinvention. Social and economic shifts can occur rapidly and unexpectedly, but continually appraising long-term trends is fundamental to maintaining value and resilience. Those interventions might include (but are not limited to) improving health and wellbeing, decreasing carbon loads and mitigating the impacts of climate change on building fabric or services.

Our research showed a growing awareness of the need for flexibility to meet these changes, both new and familiar. However, we found many respondents unprepared to act. 40% ranked building design and construction flexibility as being among the top three issues they feel least prepared to act on over the next three to five years.

“It’s about designing flexibility and durability into the project.”

Robin Keates, Grainger

This process begins at acquisition, or when planning a new development or refurbishments to an existing asset. Making the right decisions at these early stages requires collaboration with building specialists which understand the technical capabilities of a space and how any investment required to improve them will pay off. Those improvements may cover building structure, plan shape, floor height or design loadings, and will include climate change adaptation considerations and circular economy principles to mitigate those future risks, among any other commercial priorities for an owner or occupiers.

For existing buildings, radical fundamental adaptation may be unfeasible. However, even on listed buildings or those within restrictive sites or with awkward configurations, drastic improvements can be achieved with a project team of experts to apply the commercial need to building fabric and services.

When do you expect the next major refurbishment or improvement works on a property in your portfolio?

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How we can help

M&E Engineering

Well-designed and maintained mechanical and electrical (M&E) systems are critical to high-performing buildings. Our engineers provide smart design solutions, future-proof maintenance plans and holistic understanding of issues impacting the performance of building services.

Development Management

TFT’s Development Consultancy team brings together a wealth of experience in real-estate development and project delivery to provide our clients with a tailored service. Our technical expertise and commercial understanding can help your next development meet today’s needs and tomorrow’s opportunities.

Technical Due Diligence

Our specialist technical due diligence (TDD) teams of chartered building surveyors, engineers and sustainability specialists appraise a building against the commercial needs of our clients. We assess fabric, systems and the overall user experience of the building to provide an effective picture of its commercial performance, and how that could be improved.

We’re here to help

For more information on how we can help your organisation improve building performance for more valuable and resilient assets, please get in touch with our expert team today.