Property maintenance and upgrades can make for some tricky conversations with your stakeholders, particularly when those works are unexpected or accompanied by a rather hefty bill. But as many building managers know, preventive maintenance costs less than reactively fixing problems as they arise. So how do you convince your stakeholders of the value of regular planned maintenance in a way that keeps everyone happy?
Here are four reasons why preventive maintenance costs less and delivers a better return on investment than reactive maintenance.
1. Increase the overall value of your property
As a tenant or employee, where would you rather live or work – the property with faded walls, cracked paint and signs of mould and mildew, or the property with a gleaming fresh coat of paint? It’s no contest, right?
Well-maintained properties have a higher market value than those which aren’t as well looked after, which is good news for the owners, particularly if they’re looking to rent out or eventually sell their units.
To help ensure the property always looks its best, it can be a good idea to take a preventive approach, whereby maintenance painting is undertaken on a regular basis.
2. A stitch in time saves nine
Preventive maintenance costs are a small price to pay when compared to the cost of major building repairs arising from problems that have been allowed to grow for some time. Exterior paint, for example, doesn’t just make a building more visually appealing, but it also shields the surface against water, sunlight, salt, mould, mildew and even pests such as termites. This is particularly important for seaside properties, which are highly exposed to the elements and are therefore more susceptible to damage.
When a property is being prepared for a big maintenance project like a major paint upgrade, it is carefully inspected. This means that any signs of damage, decay or rot on any of the surfaces are caught early, so they can be addressed before the problem deteriorates and causes far more serious – and far more costly – issues.
A preventative maintenance approach is even more beneficial, as it means more regular inspections, ensuring any such problems are nipped in the bud before they have a chance to grow.
3. There are no unexpected major costs
It is not unusual for maintenance and budget planning in commercial buildings to occur on an ad hoc reactionary basis, with things being fixed as needed. If there are inadequate funds available, this can result in extra costs for your stakeholders or money being diverted from other value-adding projects - not to mention disgruntled stakeholders.
Rather than completing a major paint upgrade every 7–10 years, as is typical, a preventive maintenance approach, whereby smaller paint jobs are completed on a more regular basis, allows you to prepare a painting budget and stick to it, leaving more money in the coffers for any unexpected expenses that might crop up and avoiding the need to request additional funds.
Areas are also only addressed as needed, meaning less unnecessary expenses – for example, if a surface that is scheduled for repainting doesn’t actually require it, the surface can be cleaned instead, at a lower cost.
4. There are fewer major disruptions
When major works are undertaken across the entire property once every several years, this often results in huge inconveniences for the tenants, staff or patients who have to deal with excessive noise and common areas being inaccessible. Depending on the level of work required, they may even need to temporarily vacate the property or move to another area of the building.
With a regular maintenance approach, however, areas are addressed progressively in smaller increments, meaning much fewer disruptions to your stakeholders. Repairs are also typically less intrusive, which disruptions are smaller.
By arming yourself with these positive statistics, as well as a proactive approach to maintenance, you can ensure your stakeholders are happy to pay preventive maintenance costs as they can clearly see its value.
With so many different stakeholders to manage, budgets to meet and outcomes to deliver, strata managers have a challenging task on their hands when overseeing a painting project. This best practice guide offers valuable tips for strata maintenance that will help you generate value and drive constant improvements. Download it now.
Higgins Coatings is Australia and New Zealand’s premier commercial painting contractor with over 70 years of experience in providing a cost-effective painting service and tailored maintenance solution. We help strata managers plan their painting requirements and execute them with minimal disruption to residents. Contact us today for a quote.