The first impression potential customers have of your business is often the outside of your building. If the exterior looks run-down and in disrepair, clients might think your company is in a similar state on the inside. While some things require ongoing maintenance, such as pulling weeds and keeping flowers watered, you should freshen up other things as soon as they look a bit faded or aged.
About 50 percent of all construction will happen in 20 top cities. If you’re in a smaller city, it’s possible you’ll find there is a lack of updated commercial space, and you may need to update your space to retain tenants. It pays to keep the building you’re in up-to-date and in good repair, even if only for the appearance and resale value. There are several strategies you can employ to keep your building and property in good repair.
Parking Lot Maintenance
The first experience employees and customers have with your brand is the parking lot. If your parking lot is full of cracks and potholes, the entire property looks in disrepair. The more cracked and damaged the lot gets, the more weeds grow up and the worse the situation becomes, even potentially becoming a safety hazard.
Basic parking lot maintenance includes regularly filling cracks and holes in your asphalt or concrete. From time to time, you’ll need to completely repave your lot, but in between, an annual fix after the worst of winter weather passes keeps things fresh and even. Filling a crack each year may extend the life of your parking lot to 30 years or more. You should also repaint stripes and make sure to clearly outline parking spaces, including handicapped spots.
Aesthetics of the Building
Take a step back and look at your building from a distance. Is the color bright and clean? If your building is a lighter color, an annual cleaning with a power washer may be all you need to maintain a fresh appearance for years. On the other hand, if the paint is faded and looks old, it may be time to repaint. Any type of material is paintable, from metal to brick. As people drive past your building, is it clean and presentable, or does it look old and faded? Your business sign should also look fresh and new.
In addition to paint, add some landscaping features for more curb appeal. Either hire a landscaping company, or if you’re on a budget, put out some large potted plants and attend to them daily— watering and deadheading the flowers as needed throughout the growing season. A splash of bright petunias adds interest to any exterior and bloom throughout most of the summer months.
Bring in a professional engineer to look at the structure of your building every year and inspect it for safety. The last thing you want is for a client or worker to get injured by a falling beam or a piece of the ceiling coming down. An annual inspection ensures you take care of any issues before they become a danger. It shows your employees you care about them and their well-being, so you’ll attract and keep better workers. Conducting regular building and equipment maintenance also keeps your business running at peak efficiency.
An Inviting Lobby
When visitors walk into the first room in the building, what is the first thing they see? Is the carpet in disrepair? Do the walls need a fresh coat of paint? Your lobby should invite people in and have a warm and welcoming feel. A good weekly deep cleaning is a must, especially if the area sees a lot of foot traffic. If you don’t have time to clean the interior of your building, hire a company to come in after hours and clean and maintain the basic appearance.
Preparing for Tomorrow
Great In Building connectivity seems like table stakes for almost all real estate now as people live on their phones and devices. Commercial, residential, corporate or industrial real estate each have great reasons why tenants want to be connected and to have reasonable speeds to work and play online. One factor is often overlooked- nearly all new technology that an owner may need for RTW or greater efficiency is going to run on some platform. Connectivity is also the key to any Proptech, IoT, tenant safety or data collection platforms that an owner may want to provide. Landlords often overlook staying on top of current technology. An outdated building forces you to fall behind the rest of the world, because you can’t take advantage of the smart features competitors implement for higher productivity or to attract top talent.
Think about the technology that might help your employees and your tenants do their jobs better. Do you want a smart building where everyone stays connected via one central computer network? Perhaps a faster internet and better Wi-Fi allows your marketing and sales team to more readily share information and grow the customer base. As the Internet of Things grows wider, having a smarter building becomes increasingly vital to conducting business in a competitive global economy.
Property Management Ideas
Keeping a property up to date is an ongoing task that may seem a bit overwhelming. If you don’t have time to worry over the finer details of parking lots and lobbies, hire a property manager to keep up on maintenance tasks. Even if you hire someone else to oversee the look and condition of your building, though, make sure you stop each day and look at the exterior and interior through the eyes of someone new visiting your business. Are you impressed or repelled?