Updates to BOMA’s Standard Method of Measurement for Retail Properties were rolled out in March 2020 and commercial real estate (CRE) properties are still making the necessary adjustments. The BOMA 2020 Retail Standard guidelines include new features and clarifications from the previous, 2010 Retail Standard. The update to BOMA measurements for retail space is intended exclusively for Retail Properties and their associated structures and may be applied to single tenant, multi-tenant or multi-building configurations.  

Keep reading for a clear picture of BOMA’s updated Standard Method of Measurement for Retail Properties. 

Two Levels of Measurement Data 

The 2020 BOMA Retail Standard is a single method of measurement with two levels of measurement data, as opposed to three methods under the 2010 BOMA Retail Standard. The two levels of measurement data offer Partial Measurement and Overall Measurement guidelines.  

Under the Partial Measurement, a minimum of one retail unit is measured to provide the Gross Leasable Area (GLA) for that specific unit. In addition, property teams will need to measure demising walls from both the inside and outside of the unit to capture wall thickness.  

The Overall Measurement, which is recommended by BOMA, provides a full picture of a Retail Property. CRE owners and operators will benefit by this level of measurement data because it offers a complete and granular report. Additional benefits for this method include compiling the necessary data to inform: 

  • tax-related expenditures; 
  • common area maintenance (CAM) charges; and 
  • other maintenance-related expenses. 

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How Laser Scanning Technology Speeds Up CRE Space Measurement Projects

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Additional Features to Properties  

The updated BOMA measurements for retail space put forth additional guidelines that have the potential to affect your property. Updates include the measurements of certain outdoor areas that are fundamental to the “Retail Experience” as part of the GLA and Gross Leasable Exclusion (GLE). The following are examples of a GLA if used by a single occupant: 

  • Permanent patio areas 
  • Balconies 
  • Finished rooftops  

It’s important to note that patios were previously measured but not included as a GLA in the 2010 BOMA measurements for retail space. 

Other unenclosed areas where customers browse, shop, enjoy the property’s facilities and amenities, or areas that are typically constructed with higher quality finishes, unlike public sidewalks, surface parking, private or public roads and non-permanent patios, are included in the GLA as well. The additional unenclosed areas act as the boundary area of the property and benefit the landlord even if they are not measured as GLA. Often, there is a fee associated with the tenant’s use of these areas. 

New Clarifications to Guidelines

Under Overall Measurement guidelines only, inter-building calculations have the option of determining GLEs, such as parking areas, major vertical penetrations, service, and public areas to the GLA of a property’s occupants. 

Additionally, Retail CRE Properties are given the option to align concepts and measurement methodologies with the International Property Measurement Standards (IPMS) Retail Buildings Standard 

Space Measurement Checklist for CRE Due Diligence

Space Measurement Checklist for CRE Due Diligence

If you’re buying, selling, or refinancing a commercial property, be sure to use this checklist as you do your due diligence to ensure you have the most up-to-date RSF data.

Key Takeaways from the BOMA Measurements for Retail Space  

The primary objectives of the updates to the BOMA measurements for retail space are to: 

  • promote a clear-cut framework for determining the rentable square footage (RSF) calculations of a Retail Property;  
  • facilitate clear communication of retail measurement concepts; 
  • provide a generally agreed upon method of measurement; and  
  • align concepts and measurement methodologies with the IPMS Retail Buildings (2019) document. 

If you want to stay on top of BOMA and REBNY measurement standards, or even find additional RSF at your property, consider measurement services. Building Engines uses modern laser and 3D technology to deliver accurate measurement data you can trust.