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Hungarian office market continues upswing in first half

Although at the moment only a limited number of office buildings use renewable energy, the office property market is on a path towards higher sustainability, putting Hungary on the same footing as competitors, Bank Center said in a press release.

“The Hungarian office market is expected to sustain the strong momentum of the first half of the year also in the second half. The rent of high-end property is around €20 per square meter, which is not likely to change much in 2011. Budapest will see no major office property development until mid-2013, which is why we expect the value of existing downtown facilities to rise and the current 83% utilization to increase in the next 12 to 18 months”, said István Rézsó, Property Manager of Bank Center.

He added that Hungarian office property market is not lagging behind its competitors in the region in terms of energy efficiency, environmentally-conscious property development and certified buildings, despite the fact that there are still very few buildings using renewable or geothermal energy.

However, he admitted that Hungary still "has a long way to go to reach the level of Nordic and Western European countries," pointing out the fact that at the moment Hungary only has 5 or 6 LEED or BREEAM certified office facilities

While “green” office buildings are often expensive to rent they are generally cheaper to operate. As István Rézsó explained, energy efficiency can be improved through various ways, including optimization of the settings of building control systems, installation of motion sensors, replacements of fluorescent tubes and regular check-ups of the conditions of doors and windows.

Long-term energy consumption reductions can be achieved through replacement of major supply systems and modernization of the fan coil network. "The renovation project of Bank Center cut the power consumption of the building by 9% or more than 500,000 kWh in 2010 over 2009, which translates into annual savings of about HUF 15 million”, said István Rézsó.