Commenced in January 2007
Frequency: Monthly
Edition: International
Paper Count: 3

soft cost Related Publications

3 Identification of Factors Influencing Costs in Green Projects

Authors: Nazirah Zainul Abidin, Nurul Zahirah Mokhtar Azizi

Abstract:

Cost has always been the leading concern in green building development. The perception that construction cost for green building is higher than conventional buildings has only made the discussion of green building cost more difficult. Understanding the factors that will influence the cost of green construction is expected to shed light into what makes green construction more or at par with conventional projects, or perhaps, where cost can be optimised. This paper identifies the elements of cost before shifting the attention to the influencing factors. Findings from past studies uncovered various factors related to cost which are grouped into five focal themes i.e. awareness, knowledge, financial, technical, and government support. A conceptual framework is produced in a form of a flower diagram indicating the cost influencing factors of green building development. These factors were found to be both physical and non-physical aspects of a project. The framework provides ground for the next stage of research that is to further explore how these factors influence the project cost and decision making.

Keywords: green project, factors influencing cost, hard cost, soft cost

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2 Soft Cost Elements That Affect Developers’ Decision to Build Green

Authors: Nurul Zahirah M.A., N. Zainul Abidin, Azlan Raofuddin Nuruddin

Abstract:

Despite all the hype about green building, many developers are still resistant to the idea of building green due to the common perception that green building construction is expensive. This contradicts with scholarly findings that identify only a marginal cost premium or none at all given that green design is considered during the design process and planning stage. Nevertheless, cost implications continue to become an issue when deciding to build green. The planning stage is of strategic importance as decisions made at this early stage would influence the project cost thereafter. Using analysis of existing literature, the paper identifies six elements of soft cost that are considered in the planning stage. The elements include consultants, green building consultant, certification, commissioning, market, and tax. Out of the six elements, commissioning represents the bulk of soft cost for buildings seeking green certification. The study concluded that, although hard cost may have a bigger impact on the project cost, but soft cost is the hidden cost which people tend to ignore. Poor consideration of soft cost during planning stage may lead to over-realistic expectations and ultimately, overlooked cost additions.

Keywords: Green Building, soft cost, cost element, developer decision

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1 Main Elements of Soft Cost in Green Buildings

Authors: Nurul Zahirah M.A., N. Zainul Abidin

Abstract:

Green buildings have been commonly cited to be more expensive than conventional buildings. However, limited research has been conducted to clearly identify elements that contribute to this cost differential. The construction cost of buildings can be typically divided into “hard" costs and “soft" cost elements. Using a review analysis of existing literature, the study identified six main elements in green buildings that contribute to the general cost elements that are “soft" in nature. The six elements found are insurance, developer-s experience, design cost, certification, commissioning and energy modeling. Out of the six elements, most literatures have highlighted the increase in design cost for green design as compared to conventional design due to additional architectural and engineering costs, eco-charettes, extra design time, and the further need for a green consultant. The study concluded that these elements of soft cost contribute to the green premium or cost differential of green buildings.

Keywords: Green Building, soft cost, cost differential, intangible cost

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