The Key Areas of Concern For Property Inspections (Roof, HVAC, Parking Lots, Walkways, Restaurant Range Exhausts)?
Experienced investors who specialize in commercial property will tell you that cosmetic improvements can help sell a rental space, but the real points of interest remain largely unseen. Some of the bigger projects that might require repairs or replacements would include:
Roof – Studies have shown utilizing preventative maintenance on commercial roofs can extend the life of the roof for over a decade and reduce repair costs by over $0.10 per square foot. Hiring a property manager to review and inspect potential roof problems is an excellent way to protect your commercial property investment.
HVAC – Typically heating, ventilation and air conditioning concerns tend to be the responsibility of the landlord, and the maintenance, repair and ultimate replacement of these items can be very costly. It is a great idea to bring in a property manager to help you assess the condition of these long term electrical components to ensure that they have been properly maintained and serviced. The prohibitive costs of replacing HVAC units in large, commercial buildings with multiple tenants can ruin any chance of generating income from the property.
Parking Lots – Maintaining a good parking lot for your tenants is an often overlooked item of concern that good property managers can help point out with a standard checklist. The typical investor will not be aware of the ratio of square footage to parking spots for each tenant, so bringing in an experienced real estate manager can assess those figures for you to ensure you have enough space reserved for your tenants. Another key point of interest is the condition of the parking lot and if it will be covered or off-street. In a major metropolitan area like Toronto, having a parking spot is gold, so these points of consideration can greatly increase the marketability of your commercial rental property.
Walkways – The danger of not repairing and maintaining walkways around your commercial property is that they represent a liability. During inclement weather such as heavy rain or frozen conditions, the tenants in your building require safe and clear paths to and from the building and should someone get injured while trying to navigate a walkway, the lawsuit that you could potentially incur could ruin you financially. Property managers can identify these problem areas and help you resolve them before it becomes a problem. Although, should the property have walkways that are missing or are in severe disrepair, it might be a good idea to avoid the property due to the repair expense.
Restaurant Range Exhausts – Another way property managers can help you select a commercial building that will not present problems for the tenants is to isolate non-working or poorly filtered restaurant range exhausts. They can cause noise and odor issues for your tenants and this will prevent you from regularly keeping the space filled. Experienced property managers like HighGate know to look for these exhausts and can steer you away from poorly ventilated commercial properties.
These are not the most glamorous parts of commercial real estate by far, but they can pose a significant risk to your investment if left unchecked. This is why it is important to bring in a skilled management team like HighGate that knows what to look for behind the scenes, so warning signs of looming damage can be detected in time to prevent any major loss or expense. Property managers have the tools at their disposal to act quickly in the event of a fire or flood to preserve the tenant’s property and protect your investment.