A building rehabilitation is a collective common good. It is an investment of great value for the property, since the improvements affect everything related to it; its owner, the community, its tenants and the neighborhood with its passers-by.
When we talk about building rehabilitation, we need to understand that this type of project encompasses all those construction activities that are carried out to substantially improve the conditions of habitability, security or accessibility in an existing building.
For example, one way to reduce expenses depends on the type of renovation. Updating lighting, accessories and fastening devices to be more energy efficient, and repairing, modifying the general or individual water, gas, electricity or sanitation facilities of the property. With this initial expense, improvements will last over time and at the same time will reduce energy consumption.
Renovation or improvement of existing insulation on the property. The main function of these elements serves to avoid possible losses of cold or heat by adequately insulating homes. Because of this, many of the partial or comprehensive building rehabilitations include renovation of the thermal envelope as a main objective, although it could also include other important interventions such as the renewal of glass or Plexiglas compact enclosures to improve energy efficiency and thus achieve an almost 70% cut down on energy consumption. A reduction that will be reflected in the expense invoice.
Pipe insulation. In order to avoid wasting energy and optimizing the boiler's efficiency, it is highly advisable to protect the pipes with thermal insulation material, both for hot and cold water, to avoid heat losses, pipe condensation or bursting due to sudden changes in temperature.
A deep building rehabilitation based on sustainability and energy efficiency parameters, allows a considerable improvement in its usability and a drastic reduction in energy consumption. In essence, as well as reducing emissions, these renovations will enhance the quality of life for people living in and using the building.
It is also worth considering polishing the structural and constructive safety conditions of the building as a whole or of some particular elements such as facades, interior patios or roofs of the building, improving its general appearance.
In property owners’ associations, these rehabilitations could be harder to decide, as confirmed by Andreu Abelló, Forcadell’s director of the Community of Owners department. He explains that “it is much harder to get the all the members of the property of owners’ community to agree as a whole on doing any renovation”. In these cases, the Community of Owners manager, or Property Manager offers great help, since s/he acts as a mediator and also offers individualized information to each owner about the renovation, to clear out any doubts and to ensure that the works that are going to take place are going benefit their property.