NSI N.V. is a Dutch stock-exchange listed property company focused on well-located offices in economic growth regions in the Netherlands. By developing high-quality, modern, and sustainable spaces near major transport hubs, NSI aims to be the best office real estate investor in the Netherlands.
As a company with high sustainability ambitions, NSI already has smart electricity and gas meters but needed an efficient smart water monitoring system. To track its properties’ water consumption in real-time and detect leaks without delay, NSI is now using Smartvatten’s remote monitoring system.
Manual meter readings are time-consuming and inaccurate
Prior to using Smartvatten, the property managers working for NSI had to conduct manual checks on office water meters. “They had to go to each individual asset to check the water consumption and write down the numbers on a piece of paper—it was very time consuming,” says Joey Van Wijk, Technical Asset Manager at NSI.
“Now by measuring our consumption with Smartvatten, there really isn’t any room for error.”
As NSI has over 70 office buildings throughout the Netherlands, this manual approach simply was not sustainable and it was not giving NSI accurate consumption data.
“When property managers had to go physically check all the water meters, it was quite easy to have errors in the data. Now by measuring the consumption with Smartvatten, there really isn’t any room for error,” says Joey.
An engineer at SWECO recommended NSI to try Smartvatten. The system involves placing a camera over the water meter that makes the existing water meters smart. Hence no new meters are required, which reduces the cost of the project.
Responsible water consumption made possible with Smartvatten
NSI’s main goal in using Smartvatten is to consume water in a more responsible way. “We want to see our water consumption live, every moment of the day. Our second goal is to reduce water leakage and consumption. If we’re able to detect leaks early, we can reduce the amount of water we’re using,” says Joey.
While people might try to conserve water at home, they tend to be less aware of their consumption in the workplace. Now with Smartvatten, NSI has the accurate, real-time water use data they always needed but never before had access to.
“Tenants didn’t know about their water consumption at all,” says Joey.
“Now we can show our tenants how much water they consume and instruct them on how to reduce it,” he adds.
With Smartvatten, plumbing leaks can be detected early, preventing costly water damage. Within the first couple of months using Smartvatten, NSI already detected a minor leak at one of their properties before the problem escalated.
Rolling out Smartvatten across multiple NSI properties
NSI first rolled out Smartvatten’s remote water monitoring service in 10 different assets. The technical asset management team saw its value right away.
“I installed two cameras and it’s so easy. You only need an electricity point and you’re live. It’s a small investment for us—the cost is quite low if you consider the total cost of services at all our locations,” says Joey.
After a successful introduction, NSI decided to roll out the Smartvatten service across many more of its properties in the Netherlands.
“We’re a company that likes to get things done. We’re not waiting for solutions to come to us, but we’re actively looking for solutions to add value to our properties,” says Joey.
Real-time water consumption data at the click of a button
NSI and its property managers can now easily access their offices’ water consumption data in real-time. The simplicity of the Smartvatten portal makes it easy for everyone to see the info they need, when they need it.
“Everything’s available to us at the click of a button,” says Joey. “Our property managers were very enthusiastic and find it’s very easy to work in the Smartvatten portal.”
Smartvatten also created an integration with NSI’s energy management platform, hello energy, so they can see all their water and energy consumption data in one central place.
And whenever NSI has a question or problem, Smartvatten is quick to solve it. “We don’t even have to wait a couple of days to get an email back. They’re quick in responding and that’s really important to us,” says Joey.
“Smartvatten is one of our key partners”
To reach its goal of being the best office owner in the Netherlands, NSI carefully chooses a network of professional and reliable partners.
“Smartvatten is one of our key partners helping us reach our sustainability goals,” says Joey. “If we want to be the best, we have to work with the best.”
Among their sustainability initiatives, NSI has a sustainable waste management program, they’re installing electric vehicle charging stations at many of their offices, and they’re participating in GRESB for the first time to better report on their sustainability efforts.
“Sustainable innovation is very important for us and our tenants. We would like to contribute to a better world with less waste,” says Joey. “When you want to be the leading office investor you will need to aim for being the best in every aspect, which includes efficiency in the use of natural resources.”
Enhancing sustainable property development in the Netherlands
Based on their positive experience with Smartvatten, NSI is spreading the word to other companies and property managers in the Netherlands who would also benefit from smart water monitoring.
“We’re talking to other property managers and owners about Smartvatten and telling them how enthusiastic we are,” says Joey.
To better serve their growing Dutch client base, Smartvatten has now opened an office in Amsterdam.
“We are really glad that our customers here in Holland have seen the benefits of our services and the way of working. Therefore we strengthened our presence in the market by establishing a subsidiary in the Netherlands and hiring Tim Twisk to our team,” says Joe Hamari Co-Founder of Smartvatten.
Both current and future Dutch customers will now benefit from Smartvatten’s expansion into the Netherlands. “When Smartvatten gets more clients, it becomes possible for them to develop more and offer even better solutions, so everybody benefits,” says Joey.