In an effort to improve the energy efficiency of buildings, the Continental Automated Buildings Association says it has released a research report called  "Life Cycle Costing of Intelligent Buildings." The report is available free of charge and can be found by visiting

Life cycle costs analysis calculates the cost of a building system over its entire life span. The process allows commercial property owners and operators to analyze the long-term impact of construction processes and infrastructure costs on forecasted operational costs throughout the expected life of a building.

According to the association, the core objective of the “Life Cycle Costing of Intelligent Buildings” research report is to identify what needs to be done, and by whom, to make life cycle costing a mainstream criteria for building system evaluation in North America.

This research project identifies the barriers to adopting life cycle costing and determines what issues need to be rectified in order to make life cycle cost processes more understandable.

The report findings show that cost evaluations are not the industry norm. Instead, building technology purchases are most often based on low cost and relationships with past vendors. Despite this, the association’s research determined that industry participants agree on the use and adoption of life cycle costing as a valid prerequisite for building industry purchases as a key benchmark in the years to come.

The report also found that valid concerns come up when discussing the benefits associated with life cycle costing, such as it’s irregular application in the design process when developing intelligent building plans and technologies, which causes incongruence later in the process.

In addition to the lack of collaboration among building technology segments, CABA also found budgetary restrictions often hinder the adoption of the best suite technology or project, particularly when life cycle cost is not taken into consideration. Demonstrations of life cycle benefits reflect the justification of key intelligent building investments, allowing industry stakeholders to take a future-proof approach to buildings that are still standing beyond the lifespan of the purchasers.

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