Real estate property owners often experience different problems with their properties, and will thus require building caretaker services (or ‘property maintenance’ as it is more commonly referred to) at one point or another to address these issues. This service is important for several reasons, which includes preserving the quality and condition of the property, enhancing its value, and preventing minor problems from becoming more serious. Unfortunately, many people usually ignore property maintenance services, thinking that this is one expense that they don’t need. This notion stems from the lack of complete understanding about what property maintenance is and the benefits that can be had from this service.
What is Property Maintenance?
Property maintenance is a generalised service that includes other minor maintenance services (e.g. carpentry, plumbing, cleaning, etc.) and is aimed at ensuring that the client’s property is well-cared for. For example, residential property maintenance involves maintaining domestic properties and is usually availed of by homeowners who lack the time and skills to do the job themselves. Many brokers also property maintenance service providers in order to increase the property’s market value so they can sell it at a higher price.
On the other hand, commercial property maintenance is geared towards clients who own commercial establishments, sometimes including apartment buildings or condominiums. Aside from the usual wear and tear that the building goes through by being exposed to the elements, heavy foot traffic is also a cause for deterioration. Because of their size and usage, commercial properties will have more components which are prone to damage. Needless to say, maintaining such properties will require more manpower and specialised tools and equipment in order to successfully complete the job.
Why would You Need Property Maintenance Services?
As mentioned earlier, many property owners often frown when they hear about property maintenance or building caretaker services since these usually means additional expenses for them, and will only avail of the service when in dire need. This is mainly because they neglect to consider all the benefits that comes with the service. Such benefits include:
- Improved longevity of the property. A properly maintained property will generally last longer than properties which are not. One reason why many heritage houses and structures still stand today is because of regular maintenance.
- Increased property value. One major factor that determines a property’s value is its condition. Needless to say, a property that is maintained and in top-notch condition will have higher appraisal rates.
- Prevention of potential damages. Any property will deteriorate over time, mainly because of usage, exposure to the sun, wind, rain, or other weather elements, or simply out of age. Property maintenance is necessary in order to mitigate the damages that these factors can cause.
- Repairs for existing damages. Many minor problems are often ignored because they are, well, ‘minor.’ This is one of the most common mistakes that many property owners make. With property maintenance services, you can have these minor issues checked before they become major problems that often result to more expensive repairs in the long run
- Keeps your property safe. Aging buildings are highly prone to accidents. Gutters may fall down from the sides of the house because of rust, wooden stairs may break because of rot – these are just some of the mishaps that may result from residing in an old and unmaintained building. These accidents, and many similar ones can be prevented with property maintenance. This is especially true if you have a commercial property, because as the owner it is your responsibility to ensure the safety of your tenants and other people that walk into your establishment.
- Professionally serviced property. Many property owners will often try to do the necessary maintenance and repairs themselves in order to save money. Some maintenance services can be accomplished by the property owner (like cleaning the garden or weeding for instance), but more serious jobs should be left to the professionals. Jobs like roof repairs, electrical or plumbing jobs require knowledge, experience, and skills which many property owners often lack. In addition, property maintenance companies will have the necessary tools and equipment to ensure that the job is done efficiently.
- Makes insurance claims easier. Should the unfortunate happen, you will most likely need to have your insurance company involved. However, before processing a claim, insurance companies will conduct their own investigation regarding the matter, and if they see that the cause was the claimant’s negligence to take proper care of the property, the property owner may not be able to receive any payout.
On a side note, it should be made clear that property maintenance is different from property management. Property maintenance is more alike with building caretaker services, where the focus is on keeping the property in good shape which will require repairs and replacements to be done; whereas property management is more like building managers services, where the focus is on managing different administrative tasks and facets of the building like collecting rents, dealing with tenant complaints and finding tenants to occupy vacant spaces.