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Desktop Assessment

1.  With respect to reserve studies (depreciation reports) a desktop study involves no site visit and is essentially a review of the financial analysis in the initial study. The consulting team does not attend on the site.

2.  With respect to facility condition assessments, a desktop study is a review of the existing documentation such as drawings, equipment lists, and repair histories without a site visit.

The primary goals of a rapid assessment may be identified as follows:
  • To promptly obtain some data, albeit preliminary
  • To provide a level-1 screening to identify facilities for more detailed study.
  • To obtain a Preliminary FCI.
A rapid assessment is most appropriate in the following kinds of circumstances:
  • There is poor or limited documentation available for review
  • Site visit is not possible, or heavily restricted, due to confidentially issues without alerting the space users.
  • The budget is severly restricted
  • Time is limited for fuller assessments.

Listed below are some of the procedural concepts that are sometimes used in rapid assessments:

Listed below are some of the merits and advanantages of a rapid assessment:
  • Quick data for preliminary purposes.
  • There is a lower cost (at least on a preliminary basis)
  • Some buildings may not require a detailed study, which would be a waste of money.
  • In a varied portfolio, a rapid assessment has a role to play in the overall assessment mix.
Listed below are some of the limitations of a rapid assessment:
  • The quality of the data will be lower than a more detailed assessment.
  • There is a risk that some critical issues may be missed due to the cursory nature of the assessment.

Management Principles

The quality and quantity of the documentation will determine the selection of a particular desktop methodology or hybrid of techniques, which can be classified into the following broad categories: 

Some of the key statistical elements of an asset survivor curve
Fig. Some of the key statistical elements of an asset survivor curve.

Fig. In a desktop assessment, all data is reviewed from a desktop rather than in the field.

Example of a rule of thumb for window area based upon a multiplier of GFA
Fig. Rapid assessment of a building using rules of thumb for window area based upon a multiplier of GFA.

See also:
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