Having to leave your building vacant is undesirable, but sometimes chance and circumstances make it unavoidable. If you do have an unoccupied facility, however, it is important to keep it protected from both people and the elements. Here are some tips for facility managers and property owners to minimize losses from vacancy.
An empty building is a target. Whether or not it has valuables inside, make sure it’s protected from theft and vandalism. Criminals are attracted to unattended structures because they’re often poorly secured. If the building has an alarm system, maintain it. In particularly bad areas, or if the building still has contents worth protecting, consider hiring a guard service or work with the local police to include the property in a regular nighttime tour.
Because regular maintenance tends to slow down, vacant buildings are also vulnerable to bad weather. Inspect the building on a less frequent but consistent basis to check for water damage, disarranged landscaping, and problems with pipes and HVAC. The longer structural damage sits, the harder it is to clean and repair. If you ever plan on selling or reoccupying the building, it’s a worthy investment.
Finally, keep up the building’s appearance. It doesn’t have to be spotless, but make sure it doesn’t look dilapidated. Obvious derelicts attract vandalism and squatting, and tenants of neighboring buildings don’t want the negative externalities associated with an unattractive vacant property. Keep the grass and plants in order, and give it the occasional pressure wash. If you decide to sell, it’ll be less work to pump up the curb appeal.
Whether your facility is vacant or full, MaintenX is here to support you with any kind of facility maintenance project. To learn about our services, contact us anytime.