Retrofit: The Secret to Long-Term Real Estate Property Maintenance
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No matter how diligent commercial real estate owners and managers try to be about maintaining their properties, limited budgets and limited time can cause maintenance and repairs to be delayed. Left undone, these deferred maintenance items can increase your repair costs and your operating costs. That impacts not only the current value of the property, but opportunities for future growth and increase in return.
How can businesses ensure their properties won’t be devalued by deferred maintenance? With a retrofit.
The Impact of Deferred Maintenance
Buildings over twenty years old and those located in areas that experience harsh environmental conditions are particularly vulnerable if routine maintenance is deferred. The median age of U.S. commercial buildings is 32 years, and estimates put the current average age close to 53 years. These numbers have steadily increased over the last ten years.
Property owners are also facing increased competition from the record number of new construction projects. When a business is considering where to lease space or an individual is deciding where to live or work, they’re likely comparing existing and new construction.
The longer a delay in repair, the more likely it is that extensive work will be needed. These repairs can negatively impact the functionality of the building, potential lease agreements, customer attraction and retention, and even employee sentiment — ultimately impacting your bottom line.
Developments in building solutions provide options for improving and updating your facility that fit your timing and budget. The retrofit wall or retrofit roof systems is a cost-effective way to update your property when age, maintenance, and functionality show wear and tear. Here are three additional ways you can protect your investment with a retrofit.
Refresh with new features or enhancements.
Adding or replacing doors, windows, canopies can increase functionality and appeal. Along with the roof and wall panels, you can provide many other options to help enhance the look of an existing building:
- Doors and windows
- Specialized panel finishes
Restore your roof.
Property owners have two options that remove and replace existing roof panels to quickly and easily extend the life of a building.
- Metal over Metal: Install a new roof system directly over the existing roof system utilizing the same roof slope as the existing building.
- Slope Build-up: Install a new roof system with a modified or enhanced roof slope over an existing roof system. This system is ideal for existing flat roof systems.
Renew the building with a complete facelift.
The most common approach to a renewal is “remove and replace,” which allows building owners to utilize the existing structure with minimal concern to the current structural integrity. This option also makes it possible to use the existing trim components if available. Less commonly used but the right fit for some owners is the metal-over-metal option, which does not follow standard design or detailing practices.
Over the long term, retrofit services can lower building lifecycle costs by increasing energy efficiency, improving building appearance, addressing maintenance issues before they cause damage — all while minimizing interruptions to the current business.