Green Office Construction: A Discounted After-Tax Cash Flow Analysis

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The purpose of this paper is to address the apparent slow acceptance on the part of developers located in the USA to seek green certifications. If green-certified construction costs more than non-green construction, then is there a financial reason for not seeking a green rating. Do green buildings perform better than non-green buildings financially? The paper develops and presents a discounted present value model for doing a cost-benefit analysis for building green. This model enables an investor to determine the feasibility of constructing a new green-certified building instead of a conventional non-green building. Non-green buildings are not certified by a rating agency such as Leadership in Energy and Environmental Design (LEED), Energy Star or Building Research Establishment Environmental Assessment Method (BREEAM). Real estate permits are granted by local municipalities in the USA. This means that local government mandates requiring green construction that significantly adds to the initial cost of a project could have the unintended result of encouraging new non-green construction just outside their municipal boundaries.

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