Off-The-Grid Electricity Powers Up

Market Insights

What is your company doing in order to reduce its electricity expenses?

Solar panels have become commonplace within residential settings, office building and big box retailers. Our Irvine office of Lee & Associates’ purchased its office building this time last year, and found attractive utility savings when underwriting office properties already outfit with solar panels, one of which we ultimately purchased, renovated and reside in today.

Fast forward to 2015 and the lengths to which commercial users of electricity will go to protect their positions, investments and balance sheets as escalated to the next level, energy storage.

Major landlords like LBA and Irvine Company are in the middle of large scale investments. LBA’s Park Place 2.1 million SF office campus, that houses the likes of Western Digital, announced this month the installation of an energy storage system to be installed by Stem Inc, which when completed will be the largest indoor energy system of its kind in the country. The Irvine Company has already begun its power saving measures first with its energy storage solution through Advanced Microgrid Solutions on part of its 7,000,000 SF office portfolio in the Irvine Spectrum and has plans to expand throughout its portfolio with Tesla Motors batteries.


Major tenants are equally sensitive to energy consumption. On the office front, locating one’s office within a project like the ones mentioned above could result in annual operating expense savings. On the industrial front, manufactures and other warehouse based businesses drawing large amounts of electricity are on their own because they are directly in charge of their own utility expenses. In filming a marketing video with long time client Dave Melin, CEO of Tustin based digital marketing, print and fulfillment firm Meridian, we discussed his current installation of energy savings battery solution. His implementation was after seeing a continued rise in electricity expenses and penalization of use of electricity during peak hours. Imagine competing with another manufacturer who pays dramatically lower energy costs as a result of this type of investment. It can be a real competitive advantage as the company with the lower overhead can oftentimes provide a better value to its customers.