A recent survey titled 2011 State of Communications Services in Commercial Real Estate for which Comcast polled nearly 500 BOMA (Building Owners and Managers Association) members revealed that high-speed networks are a top priority for building tenants – and quickly becoming the norm.
In fact, advanced communications services took center stage in this report, which found 90% of property managers believe that advanced communications services like Metro Ethernet, high-speed Internet, voice, cable television and wireless access are essential to attracting and retaining tenants, behind only parking, price and location.
Linda Warda, a Detroit-based property manager at Farbman Group recently told BUILDINGS that these results reflect a trend she’s seeing in her own buildings as well. Farbman Group is a full service real estate firm handling all facets of real estate transactions, from property management and leasing to acquisition and disposition
“The survey showed that over one-third of respondents say the topic of communications providers is raised in three out of every four negotiations with prospective tenants,” says Warda. “This certainly echoes with what I’ve been seeing in the Detroit market, as I often receive questions about our business Internet providers during negotiations with prospective tenants – even more than I did before.”
Farbman Group recently announced that it will be offering high-speed Internet, voice and cable television to tenants at its Sheffield Office Park location in Troy, Michigan, which consists of 520,000 square feet across three facilities. Previously, this location had satellite-based Internet services.
“With our satellite service, we were struggling to achieve maximum uptime – and that just wasn’t an option. Since switching to high-speed, we have had virtually no downtime,” says Warda.
Warda is constantly looking for the latest advancements in building amenities and technology to keep both her property and her tenants on the cutting edge.
“We realized that we needed to provide top of the line communications services to our tenants, which is why we switched to high-speed.” said Warda. “Many of our tenants talk about their need for high-speed Internet so that they can connect to ‘the cloud’ to store data and backup their IT systems offsite, or to access software applications that are hosted in another location.”
To Warda, it is clear that the rise of the “hyper-connected business” is here to stay.
“These survey results are similar to what we are seeing from our tenants in terms of facility needs – not only the best amenities, but advanced connectivity too.”
Linda Warda is a property manager at Farbman Group, a company that manages more than 24 million square feet of office, retail, multi-family and industrial space throughout Southeast Michigan