Vacant Commercial Properties: Don’t Leave Them Unattended
With the current shift toward working from home, your approach as a landlord or business owner may need an update to protect your assets. Much fewer offices have remained open, and you may have found yourself with commercial properties to manage without any occupants.
These extended periods of vacancy mean that it is vital to ensure your properties are adequately secure and cleverly managed. Unoccupied buildings can pose a bigger security risk, as intruders are more likely to target premises they know are empty.
With some careful consideration and planning, your building won’t suffer from the sudden change in occupancy. Here is our guide to managing vacant commercial properties, and tips for ensuring you don’t leave them at risk!
Notify your Insurer
The first step you need to take when handling a vacant property is to inform your insurer of the change in circumstance. A property that is usually engaged switching to unoccupied is a material change in risk, and your insurer has a requirement to be notified. Your insurance provider can then also respond with any additional measures that they recommend you implement to your vacant property. They’ll likely have some good ideas!
Consider Professional Help
A quick and easy way to make sure your buildings are protected is to hire a specialised company for void property management. An experienced management business can tailor a service for your property, identify potential risks and advise you on preventative security measures. Insurers may ask for regular assessments to the exterior and interior state of your building, and these can be carried out efficiently by your property management provider.
Uphold Tight Security
Effective security measures are even more valuable to your property in preventing burglary while it’s unoccupied. Remote CCTV allows you to survey your building and its immediate surroundings without being present on the premises! Any suspicious behaviour will be caught and reported by you before it can escalate, and the mere presence of cameras on your building will deter most criminals. Insurers also consider properties with CCTV as less risky.
Keep It Clean
Though it seems a less pressing task, unoccupied commercial properties still need to be cleaned. Contract cleaning allows you to determine a tailored plan for your building in all seasons, and even while it’s empty. Workspaces may not need to be wiped as often since they’re untouched, but your exterior windows still need washing and carpet needs cleaning from dust! The cleaner your building is kept, the less you’ll need to do once it’s occupied again.
Keep the gates, barriers and fences around your property well maintained, and all areas of your premises as well-lit as possible. Buildings that look regulated and clean are less likely to be targeted by opportunistic fly-tippers, and you won’t need to dispose of their mess. Well-lit premises are much less attractive since fly-tippers work at night to avoid visibility. If you feel it is necessary, install signage to inform fly-tippers that they will be prosecuted when caught.
Predict Potential Issues
If you consider the times where your building is likely to be most at risk, you can predict the incidents that may occur and prevent them. For example, security guards may be overkill for your unoccupied business premises on usual days, but they could be instrumental in protecting your building during a local festival. If you know that a protest is going to occur near your building, you can preempt the security issues that may pose and prepare accordingly.
For further advice on void property management, security services like CCTV installation, and cleaning contracts for your business, please contact us at RPS Facilities.