Spring is around the corner — meaning it’s time to get your commercial real estate properties ready for warmer days ahead. As the snow melts and flowers bloom, you should start working through your spring maintenance checklist.
The National Association of Realtors (NAR) states that the spring real estate market is one of the hottest property-selling seasons of the year. In fact, sales activity increases by 34% come March, with June being the peak month.
Investing in springtime upgrades and updates will ultimately save you money in the long run and boost your tenant capacity and satisfaction. Here are six ways to prepare your commercial property for spring.
6 tips to get prepped
1. Spruce up the Grounds
Any real estate expert will tell you that curb appeal matters when attracting tenants. Businesses are looking for a well-manicured property they can take pride in. Ideas to spruce up the exteriors of your properties include the following:
- Power washing walkways and building sidings to remove mold, mildew and stains
- Laying down new mulch in the garden beds
- Fertilizing lawns to ensure healthy regrowth
- Planting flowers for added color
- Cleaning windows
- Repairing parking lots
Cracks in the parking lot are expected as the asphalt expands with the rapidly changing temperatures. Evening out the pavement will prevent vehicle damage and improve the overall appearance.
2. Schedule Annual Inspections
Spring is the perfect time for an inspector to check your property’s roof, plumbing and other features. Leaky toilets and sink faucets could cost your tenants hundreds of dollars.
Additionally, cracks in the roof or missing shingles can cause leaks in the building, mold and mildew, drafts, and reduced air quality. It might also be time to replace your roof.
An inspector will thoroughly check your buildings for necessary repairs in places you might overlook. It’s much better to tackle these improvements early than before contractors get busier during the summer.
3. Review Property Policies
A new season is full of opportunities to overhaul your property policies and procedures. Emerging technologies and markets shift the commercial space and your policies should reflect that — after all, change alters how the property is managed.
Figure out what works and what doesn’t. Is the current system set up efficiently? Are there ways to modify the equipment or procedures to positively impact other parts of the operations? How is your leadership? Consider how you might improve the current system.
4. Integrate Property Management Software
Streamlining your policies might entail integrating property management software. This market is expected to increase at a rate of 4.9% by 2031 as landlords seek solutions for automation, such as administrative tasks, online payment processing, service tracking and other operations.
Tenants prefer advanced systems for easier transactions and record-keeping, while landlords usually find that property management software programs reduce human error and ensure less time processing payments by hand.
5. Upgrade for Energy Efficiency
Optimizing your commercial property for greater energy efficiency is the best way to prepare for the spring real estate market. Companies and individuals are paying close attention to climate change, seeking ways to lower their carbon footprints. Upgrading to energy-efficient equipment and systems will help them achieve their sustainability goals.
Building operations account for 20% of the total carbon emissions in the United States. However, landlords can take advantage of several opportunities to improve energy consumption, including the following:
- Install programmable thermostats for enhanced temperature comfort
- Provide pamphlets and other resources to tenants, educating them on reducing their energy consumption
- Create a schedule for regular maintenance and upgrades
- Swap out bathroom features for water-conserving models
- Install light-emitting diodes (LEDs) to decrease lighting energy use
- Add new insulation
- Retrofit or upgrade new HVAC systems
Consider hiring an energy consultant to inspect your property for potential energy upgrades. They can provide insight into areas for improvement to save money on utilities.
6. Test Alarm Systems
It’s good news if your commercial property made it this far without a fire. However, you should test your alarm system to prevent future incidents, especially as spring approaches.
About 11.8% of commercial building fires are accidental, while 6.6% occur from electrical malfunctions. Avoid mishaps and improve your tenants’ safety by ensuring the fire and smoke detectors work correctly.
Get Your Commercial Properties Ready for Spring
Getting your commercial properties ready for the spring real estate market might take some money and elbow grease, but you’ll see excellent returns. Improving your buildings will entice new tenants to consider your space and boost current renters’ satisfaction.
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