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Commercial Property Maintenance

When you own a commercial property, there are a variety of building systems that must be maintained for safety and performance.  In this article, the experts at Rachuba Real Estate Advisors will discuss the five building systems you should inspect and maintain regularly to maximize the value of your commercial real estate.

Maintenance is not just about curb appeal.  In fact, the more important aspects of maintenance involve the property’s structural, mechanical, electrical and plumbing systems.  Even the best-looking buildings can’t operate if those systems are not working properly.  This is why an effective preventive maintenance program is important.

Don’t’ know where to start?  Below is a list of major systems that Building Owners (or their Real Estate Managers) should inspect on a regular basis:

  1. Exterior – Since you only get one chance to make a first impression, you want to be sure that your tenants, their customers, and those who live and work in the area have a great one. Landscaping boosts curb appeal, so you’ll want to make sure your plantings and lawn are in good condition and properly maintained.  Hardscapes, such as pavers and sidewalks should be inspected and cleaned often.  Exterior lighting systems provide an aesthetic and safer environment.
  2. Heating, Ventilation, Air Conditioning Systems (HVAC) – All HVAC systems should be on a regular maintenance schedule that includes system checks, changing filters, air quality. If you do not have someone on-staff to monitor these systems, outsource the service.  You will minimize down time and costly repairs by maintaining these systems properly.
  3. Restrooms – Faucets, fixtures, and sinks can be updated to improve appearance, functionality and conserve water. Touchless faucets and toilets often reduce water usage and the spread of germs.  Clean restrooms are critical to customer satisfaction.
  4. Elevators & Stairs – Getting your tenants (and their customers) to their destination safely is paramount. So, for multi-level commercial properties, you’ll want to have a maintenance contract for your elevator systems.  This often includes routine inspection as well as 24/7 service.  Stairs are the primary evacuation method, in the event of an emergency.  Routinely check handrails, treads, lighting, and doors to ensure your stairs are safe and clean.
  5. Exits – Make sure that exit routes are prominently displayed and that exit signs are lit and working, especially in the event of power disruption. Check exit doors to ensure proper operation.

If you own a commercial property, ensuring your systems are operational at all times is a must. While a preventative maintenance program is not going to eliminate the need for repairs, it will minimize the late-night maintenance failures that are disruptive to tenants and employees.  This also saves you money.  It is less expensive to perform preventive maintenance than to perform an emergency repair.

It will also help you prepare for long-term capital expenses.  By inspecting these systems regularly, you will know when it will be time to upgrade or replace the systems.  An effective Reserve Policy for Capital Expenditures can you prepare financially.

There are resources available for developing such a plan.  A Real Estate Management professional can guide you in the right direction.  Rachuba Real Estate Advisory Services can provide a property assessment with recommendations for your specific needs.  Contact Rachuba Real Estate Advisors today!