how to create a preventative maintenance plan for your condoThe benefits of having a condo unit maintenance checklist are many: detecting a problem before a critical failure, anticipating repairs and replacements, and most importantly, extending the life of almost every asset in your community. Designing and executing a comprehensive plan for preventative maintenance must be a top priority for your building. Extending the lifespan of major systems such as your elevators or plumbing, as well as being better able to predict when they will need repair or replacement, allows your building to budget more accurately. Preventing breakdowns will also obviously reduce the possibility of losing services, which always helps keep residents happy. But where do you start?  It can seem a little overwhelming to keep track of all of the moving parts in a condominium and account for all of them. Read on for five tips to help you do just that.
  1. Stop problems before they start

    Benjamin Franklin said, “A stitch in time saves nine.” Fixing small problems before they have a chance to become big problems will save your association both time and money. Walk the building and photograph all of the systems, common areas, structural surfaces, paving, and painting. Create a database of all the items that must be maintained, including the photos. On your condo unit maintenance checklist, make notes of what needs to be done and when so that you have a clear picture of the work needed. Include how often systems or items need to be maintained.
  2. Keep the benefits in mind

    Overall, preventative maintenance can have a major impact on both cost control and loss prevention. Your preventative maintenance schedule will allow you to begin to identify and anticipate repair or replacement costs throughout the year and beyond. It will also forecast when major costs need to be included in your yearly budget, so that your condo runs smoothly without any inconvenient surprises that disrupt the living experience of your residents. Through careful, regular inspections and maintenance, you can ensure the value of your property is maintained while doing everything you can to make sure your residents are enjoying a pleasant environment.
  3. Understand the importance

    Why is condominium preventative maintenance so important for your community? Mid-rise, high-rise and large-scale buildings require more care and maintenance in general, especially in preparation for changes in the season throughout the year. Your building has many complex systems, and a long list of items needs to be checked, serviced and adjusted. These systems include HVAC units, plumbing, boilers, water-filtration systems, and more. A property management company with experience in managing a high volume of condominiums will understand the importance of preventative maintenance, will have tried and true best practices in this area, and will be ready to help you execute your plan effectively so that you can begin to reap the benefits.
  4. Set a schedule

    Set a calendar for when items need to be checked and maintained, based on the frequency they need it: monthly, quarterly, semi-annually and annually. Work with the system manufacturers to identify suggested maintenance schedules for equipment to run at maximum efficiency. Then, put your plan into action. A quality property management company will have a system in place to help with the calendar management. FirstService Residential Connect, offered by FirstService Residential, will send reminders and notifications when maintenance is due. It can also keep residents apprised of maintenance schedules for items like window or balcony cleaning.
  5. Get the right partner

    In order to create, implement and monitor a complete preventative maintenance schedule for your condominium, 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 enthusiastic commitment of an in-house maintenance staff, as well as outside expert service technicians and professionals with a deep understanding of specific systems. Your entire community, from the Board to your building’s maintenance staff to the residents, will reap the rewards of your preventative maintenance planning. For more information on how to put a preventative maintenance plan in place in your community, contact FirstService Residential, Florida’s leading property management company.
Thursday November 10, 2016