We often hear the question, "Has the building or suite been measured per BOMA?" A more appropriate question should be, "Has the BOMA process been followed precisely and correctly documented when measuring to yield a BOMA Office Standard RENTABLE area?"
A building measured to the BOMA Standard means that an exact, sequential method was followed when measuring the building. This method is comprised of three different steps.
How & Where to Measure
The first step defines the sequential process of how to measure a building. For example, first,establish the Interior Gross Area (IGA) and so on. If the specific order of measurement is changed the final calculation will be incorrect. The Standard also defines where the boundaries of the measured space are established.
For example, the inside face of the dominant portion (glass or wall) of a vertical exterior enclosure defines the boundary. Again, if the rules of boundaries are not followed significant discrepancies will occur in final calculations.
Inventory & Categorize
The next step is to identify and inventory a complete list of all measured rooms and areas within the building. Categories may include lobbies, corridors, restrooms, occupant area, mechanical, elevator, electrical, shafts, etc. Incidentally, there are some areas of a building that the BOMA Standard does not recognize or measure. It is our practice at Stevenson to measure all parts, areas, patios, walkways, overhangs, etc. that go with the building. These areas typically are not included in the calculation but many commercial real estate professionals want a complete inventory of the entire building.
Apportionment & Calculation
The third step is to apportion all inventoried areas to their respectful classification of space. BOMA clearly identifies the classes including, major vertical penetrations, occupant areas, building and floor services areas, etc. The Standard also identifies where the boundaries of each class of space is located (wall priority diagram). Finally once all areas have been classified a series of calculations and formulas are applied to determine Rentable, Service, Amenity, and Usable square feet. A formula is also applied to obtain a load factor.
As tenants move in and out of a building measurement becomes increasingly sophisticated. Maintaining correct building calculations requires diligent and expert documentation by an experienced Space Accounting firm.