Home > Six Key Areas to Maintain in a Commercial Property

Six Key Areas to Maintain in a Commercial Property


Commercial properties such as restaurants, office buildings and retail stores typically have a high amount of foot traffic surrounding the property. Combined with a wide variety of weather, including freeze-thaw cycles in much of the country, it is important to repair sidewalks to prevent injuries among tenants and pedestrians. Regardless if the sidewalk is asphalt or concrete, you must pay close attention to its condition throughout the year.


It's critical to maintain hardscapes as well as the landscaping on your commercial property in order to boost curb appeal. For example, the pavers in your hardscape should be inspected and cleaned every three-to-four months. During inspection, you should determine if the pavers must be repaired or sealed. Regular maintenance and upkeep of your landscaping includes planting perennials for season-round, low-maintenance appeal; lawn upkeep, fertilization and replacement/repair; tree and shrub care; and adjusting the watering schedule based on seasonal needs.


Exterior lighting systems face very harsh conditions and are subject to problems beyond burned out lights. Acrylic lenses have a tendency to turn yellow over time and lamps can have dirt, bugs and even birds' nests in them. Facility managers should regularly service and update their exterior lighting systems to improve visibility and promote a safe environment.


Managing a commercial property includes the maintenance, repair, operations and daily cleaning of the facility. Certain cleaning services can be outsourced to a contractor, but a facility manager must complete other cleaning tasks. Sit down with the facility manager to discuss the cleaning needs in order to procure the proper cleaning supplies for floors, windows and other surfaces.


Holiday decorations—from seasonal decorations to plants—can have a positive impact on tenants and visitors who spend time on your commercial property. Your seasonal decorations should be high-quality, professional-looking and, most important, tasteful in order to make the best impression.


Retail properties, shopping centers and large department stores are magnets for crime. Office buildings and smaller businesses have been increasingly targeted for break-ins as well. Regardless of whether you have a sophisticated or basic security program, it's vital you regularly check and monitor all security systems to make sure they are operating properly.


Commercial elevators have become state-of-the art technological people-movers. However, the basic principle of elevators is to safely get tenants and guests to their destinations. One simple solution to ensure safety: Replace any burnt out cab lights to increase visibility and enhance the aesthetics of the elevator.


OSHA requires that exit routes on your commercial property are permanent, address the fire resistance-ratings of construction materials used in exit stairways, describe openings into exits, define the minimum number of exit routes in the workplace, address exit discharges, and define locked exit route doors as well as exit route doors. As a result, be sure to update emergency lighting and discuss these requirements with tenants to ensure they understand the crisis plan and exit strategy.


Stairwells are the evacuation point in case there is an emergency on your property. There are numerous codes and guidelines regarding handrail size and placement, requirements related to the distance from the stair tread, the weight load the handrails must be able to bear, and how far the handrails must extend beyond the first and last step. Furthermore, as a property or facility manager, it's also important to regularly assess if railings are secure, make sure the stairwells are clean, and ensure there is adequate slip resistance within the stairwell.


Dirt and grime in your property's carpeting will accelerate wear and reduce cleanliness. Some carpet cleaning chemicals can leave behind sticky residues that actually collect more dirt. When cleaning the carpet make sure to properly dilute the chemicals that break down stains. It's also important to schedule regular deep cleaning of your carpeting in order to remove the dirt and grime that is out of reach of vacuums.


Hiring a painting contractor (add PM video link) can be a daunting task. But, regular painting and touchups—whether they are interior or exterior projects—are a critical aspect of maintaining the proper aesthetics of a commercial space. Whether hiring a contractor to complete the painting job or completing a project with in-house personnel, it's critical you specific the right paints, brushes and materials to ensure a quality project.


Regardless of whether you run your own business in the building or lease a commercial property to tenants, keeping your HVAC system in working order is a top priority. Ensure proper HVAC operation through regular maintenance and upkeep by testing the heating and cooling system in the months prior to seasonal weather changes. You don't want to be stuck looking for a repairman on the coldest day of the year. Constantly monitor your HVAC system performance and keep reminders to replace filters to promote air quality, if necessary.


At some point, tenants or visitors to your property will end up using the restroom facilities. Whether it's odor, trash, paper towels, soap or other supplies, it will be obvious if the restrooms are being attended to on a regular basis. Facility managers must either subcontract or use in-house employees to maintain and disinfect all surfaces continually to establish a healthier restroom environment.


Upgrade faucets, fixtures and sinks to improve looks, functionality and water conservation. Automatic or touchless faucets and fixtures can stand up to high levels of use and automatically limit the flow of water. Automatic control for touchless toilet fixtures active only when needed and only for one flush. Both can help reduce the amount of water used on your property. Furthermore, touchless faucets and fixtures help prevent the spread of germs in your bathrooms.


Increase convenience and further eliminate the potential for germ transfer by installing touchless soap dispensers and hand dryers. Restroom users are always concerned about hygiene, and it's now common to have fewer touch points in order to curtail germ transfer.


Managers of large or small commercial properties, specifically office, multifamily and apartment buildings, are always looking for opportunities to save money. Consider new appliances to boost efficiency and conserve more water. If possible, purchase the same appliance style and manufacturer for multiple properties. Also, keep detailed records of new appliance purchases and any maintenance or warranty issues that may arise.


Most facility managers inspect and caulk ceramic tile in bathrooms and kitchens every quarter. If necessary, apply fresh caulking around sinks to prevent leaks and mold growth. On the exterior of the property, inspect the caulk applications at windows and doors to keep the elements of weather from penetrating the property. Proper exterior caulking can help prevent heat loss and gain.


Commercial properties typically pay quite a bit for waste disposal. Therefore, it's important to investigate the opportunities to reduce, reuse and recycle. Most states have laws that require you to have an active commercial recycling program. Therefore, it's critical that you work with tenants to establish initiatives to properly dispose and recycle waste. Make it easy by purchasing new trashcans and bins to aid waste disposal and recycling.

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