On top of thousands in taxes and fees every year, commercial property owners need to calculate maintenance into their annual costs. This can be expensive if you don’t take preventative measures to avoid deterioration and degradation year round. Commercial property maintenance can be affordable or it can bankrupt you.
Just like a well-maintained garden, a properly maintained commercial property can ensure you are able to reap rewards for years to come. If you maintain your property well, leasees will want to stick around longer. Show that you care and renters will understand that rent increases are reasonable for the work you’ve put in.
With the right checklist, your job will be easy. Follow these tips to save money on commercial property maintenance.
1. Pay Attention To Your Roof
Replacing roofing can be one of the biggest expense burdens for property owners. Problems with your roof can cause recurring issues if there are leaks or weaknesses. A collapse could cost you hundreds of thousands in damages or personal injuries.
Inspect your roof properly at least twice every year. Take time to inspect after a severe storm to see if any buckling, leakages, or punctures have occurred. Clear out any debris and clean out roof drains.
Review the warranty for every roof you own. Take a walk around to check out sheet metal or sections that have needed repairs before. Watch for recurring issues in those problem areas.
Make sure that flashing, caulking, or any joining materials are intact and secure.
Watch out for corrosion on metal roofs. Condensation from HVAC units and pools of water from rain or snow can cause problems that are expensive to fix.
When you’re thinking about commercial property maintenance on a green roof, you’ll need to prepare for a different approach. If you have plants growing, you need to make sure they’re healthy, watered properly, and weeded regularly. Check your irrigation system for leaks and pooling regularly.
Green roofs are an important step toward environmental conservation and can make residents feel connected to a building. Your maintenance work will help to inspire that connection.
If you have solar panels, inspect them more often. Ice and snow buildup on panels can damage them or limit their efficiency.
2. Fix Lighting
Poorly maintained lighting can hinder the safety of your property, waste money on energy costs, and make life in your building unhappy. Inspect lighting areas regularly and expect to replace all the bulbs at once.
If you have areas that have their own transformers, sensors, or controllers, check them separately for functionality. For exterior lighting, check that cables and hardware are in place. Make sure all relevant gaskets are properly tightened.
Create a “relamping” schedule, where, regardless of burnouts, you’ll replace all of your bulbs in anticipation of bulb life limits. Check color temperature to make sure you don’t drastically change the tone of the area.
Make sure adjustable lighting is in the proper position. Dust everything and clean lenses covering lights.
You’ll need to safely store and dispose of lights. Some contain mercury and many contain toxic substances. Don’t just throw them in the trash.
3. Watch Your HVAC
Taking care of your HVAC system will reward you over time. Most of the issues that arise with HVAC have clear symptoms that arise before things get dire. A well-maintained HVAC system will not only keep air quality high but will also save money by staying efficient.
Make sure to inspect it at the beginning and end of every season. When you start it up, run inspections and check that gaskets and screws are all in place. If you’ve got condensation drain pans, but sure they’re cleaned out.
Bring out a professional contractor like M&E Maintenance Solutions to have them inspect and make recommendations.
If you have cooling towers, check screens and panels for any issues. Make sure the supports are in place and that all of the nozzles work. Check any moving parts, fan blades, and motors to ensure that things are running smoothly.
The bearings in your pumps might need lubrication. Check this every year. Look at any couplings and make sure there aren’t any major leaks.
Watch the filters in an air conditioning unit and make sure they’re changed on schedule. Some need to be changed monthly while others can be done quarterly or biannually. Take a look at the condenser coil and be sure it’s clean.
4. Bathrooms and Plumbing
While you might want to overlook drips and unremarkable leaks, they could belie issues in the system that could do serious damage. If you hear noises or see any leaks at all, be sure there aren’t other problems. Leaks in your walls can cause rot that could cost you in the range of tens of thousands for a single unit.
If you have drinking water cooling systems, make sure the condensers are working properly. Their motor bearings should be lubricated every year. If anything seems worn, call in a professional.
Replace the oil in the compressor and be sure it’s working as intended.
Bathroom fixtures take a lot of abuse. Make sure that everything is tightened every few months to ensure efficiency. A couple of faucets that no longer close could cost you hundreds on your water bill every month.
5. Think Long Term
You should have plans that stretch out to 5 years. Make sure your electrical systems are checked by a licensed electrician every few years. Switches, fuse boxes, and panels should get tested at least every 5 years.
If you have a parking area, it should be cleaned out every 6 months or so. Repave it every 10 years, more often if you get heavy use from visitors and events. Have it power-washed every year to limit the amount of commercial property maintenance you have to spend on asphalt.
Commercial Property Maintenance Saves Cash
The more time you devote to maintenance, the less you’ll have to spend in replacements. Letting a building deteriorate will add up quickly. Roof leaks become ceiling replacements, drips become floor replacements, electrical issues can become fires.
If you’re ready to take on a maintenance plan for your commercial property, contact us today for implementation tactics.