4 steps to creating a high-rise building maintenance planCreating and executing a comprehensive building maintenance plan for your high-rise community should be a top priority for your board and property management company. The benefits of proactive building maintenance are countless, from preventing the premature breakdown of mechanical systems to prolonging the useful life of your community’s assets and predicting potential repairs or replacements.
 
All of this contributes to a more accurate budget for your community high-rise. By having an accurate list of repair costs and life spans of assets, your board members and management team are better prepared to anticipate and fund necessary capital projects. This also helps the property have an updated reserve study that details the maintenance and replacement schedule for the building’s assets.
More importantly, a detailed building maintenance plan will go a long way to significantly reduce the loss of services, such as shutting down an amenity for necessary repairs.
 
With so many moving parts to keep track of in a robust high-rise community, it may seem a little daunting to imagine how to manage and implement a building maintenance schedule to cover your entire community. This is where a licensed professional team and knowledgeable property management company can really help.

But first, the preliminary question…
 

What is building maintenance?

Building maintenance encompasses a wide range of responsibilities tailored to the specific needs of the community. It encompasses a wide variety of essential tasks performed behind the scenes to guarantee the continued functionality of an amenity or structure.

These maintenance duties can comprise cleaning common areas, regularly disposing of waste, and addressing any broken items. Additionally, it may involve the inspection, repair, and upkeep of community assets such as electrical systems, heating and cooling systems, and other essential utility services.

In certain cases, building maintenance also extends to the outdoors, such as managing sprinkler systems, tending to vegetation, and maintaining the overall landscape.
 

Who is responsible for maintenance in my community?

Typically, the maintenance workforce in a high-rise community is structured based on experience and responsibilities, ensuring efficient building management.
  1. Housekeeping: Janitors/housekeepers are responsible for the cleanliness of the property and it’s facilities. Their tasks include mopping floors, vacuuming carpets, cleaning bathrooms, and washing windows and glass doors.
     
  2. Maintenance Technicians: Maintenance technicians are skilled professionals who inspect, repair, and maintain various building systems, including HVAC, electrical, and water systems. They receive tasks through work orders and report to supervisors who oversee their assignments.
     
  3. Maintenance Supervisors / Chief Engineer: Maintenance supervisors / chief engineers play a crucial role in planning, assigning, and managing a team of maintenance workers. They prioritize the day-to-day and weekly workload by reviewing incoming work orders and considering both short- and long-term objectives. Additionally, the chief engineer handles vendor relationships and helps ensure they are completing their services according to the service contract signed with the association.
This hierarchy of staffing is relative to the needs of the community; therefore, your high-rise community may not have these specific roles. However, as long as the association has access to the maintenance team it requires, this structured approach ensures that your team efficiently maintains and manages your property, guaranteeing its optimal functionality and cleanliness.
 

Creating a high-rise building maintenance plan

  1. Work with experts

    Why is building maintenance so important for your community? High-rise and large-scale buildings require more care and maintenance due to the many complex systems housed within, such as HVAC units, plumbing, boilers, water filtration systems, and more. This long list of items needs to be checked, serviced, and adjusted routinely to help ensure the optimal efficiency of the building’s assets.

    To create, implement, and monitor a complete building maintenance schedule for your high-rise community, it’s imperative that you enlist the help of experienced professionals. A respected community association management company can create and execute your overall plan, but you will also need the commitment of your in-house maintenance staff, as well as outside expert service technicians and professionals with a deep understanding of specific systems.
     
  2. Focus on the details

    The foundation of a good preventative maintenance plan is simple: sweat the small stuff. Your community can significantly reduce repair and replacement costs by recognizing and repairing a small problem before it turns into a much larger issue. This starts by having the property manager and chief engineer constantly walk the entire property and visually document building systems, public spaces, private spaces, and all structural surfaces.
     
  3. Make a list

    Throughout the management team’s walk through the property, have them create a list of components to be inspected and maintained and develop a preventative maintenance schedule that’s broken into at least four categories: monthly, quarterly, semi-annually, and annually.

    Experienced property management companies often have systems in place to help facilitate your schedules, like FirstService Residential Connect, which provides timely reminders and notifications when routine maintenance is required. The FirstService Residential Connect portal also delivers communications to keep residents up to date on maintenance windows, repair work, and more.
     
  4. Set the building maintenance schedule

    Once you have a complete list of all the equipment and systems within your high-rise property, you and your team need to establish a building maintenance schedule. Work with the system manufacturers to identify suggested maintenance schedules for equipment to run at maximum efficiency. Then, put your plan into action.

    By executing your preventative maintenance plan, you’ll rest easier knowing you’re one step ahead.
     
    By implementing an effective building maintenance schedule, your entire high-rise community will reap the benefits through reduced repair costs in your annual budget to fewer amenity service interruptions.  

    Your building maintenance schedule will allow you to begin to identify and anticipate repair or replacement costs throughout the year and also forecast when major costs need to be included in your yearly budget. Through careful, regular inspections and maintenance, you can help ensure the value of your high-rise property is maintained while elevating resident experiences.
For more information on how to create a successful building maintenance schedule and how a professional management company can support your high-rise community, contact FirstService Residential.
 
Wednesday September 13, 2023