Category Archives: Commercial

Commercial Flooring Options

Commercial buildings have a lot of foot traffic, and the floors can take a beating. If your flooring can’t hold up to the capacity in how it’s used though, it will need to be frequently replaced. Plus, it will be uncomfortable to walk on, and your tenants will notice. So, what is the best flooring for a building which is used commercially?

  • Concrete flooring
    Concrete cleans easily and is very durable. When sealed adequately, it will resist water, and this type of flooring works well with radiant heating. Not only does it last long but it can be finished in a variety of different aggregates, colors, and stains.
  • Luxury Vinyl Tile flooring
    This flooring is also known as floating wood. It’s fused together with multi-layered flooring and a lamination process. It’s scratch, water, and noise resistant. It can replicate the appearance of wood, natural stone, and ceramic tile.
  • Natural stone
    This option is the most durable, but it is also the most expensive. The most resilient stones are sandstone, limestone, and granite which can withstand a significant amount of traffic and last for decades.
  • Porcelain Tile flooring
    This type of flooring has been used since ancient times in high traffic areas. It comes in various designs, styles, and décor. It has the versatility to fulfill any flooring job though.
  • Epoxy floor coating
    This is usually applied to floors which are concrete, and it makes for a smooth finish that withstands high traffic and lasts several years. It’s also non-porous, so mold, dirt, and other material can’t penetrate the flat surface. Although not as common, hardwood and tiles can be coated too.
  • Polished concrete floors
    Concrete floors can be used in commercial and industrial settings. Maintaining the concrete floor is easy. Dust mop on a day to day basis, and then wet mop it frequently. Dyes, stains, and textures can be added for a unique look.

You can give your commercial flooring different looks depending on what you use.

The Advantages of Replacing Windows

At a point in time, the windows in your commercial building are going to need to be replaced. When you do, there are some things that you need to think about before going out and buying them. Below are some things to consider before you make that big purchase:

  • Increases efficiency: When you install new windows in your commercial building, it improves the energy efficiency of your rental property. By selecting the right windows for your building, you can prevent energy loss and heat transfer. By replacing those old one pane windows or old technology two pane windows with more energy efficient ones, it can save you money over time.
  • New technology: There has been new technology since your windows were installed in your rentals. Window panes are better insulated now, plus there’s low-emissivity metallic coatings, new types of framing materials and tinting. All these improvements are geared towards durability and energy efficiency. You can also have security and safety features installed.
  • Increase value: By replacing windows, this enhances the value of your building. If you are planning on selling it, the new windows help with their streamlined functionality and efficiency. They will improve the appearance of the property too.
  • Areas prone to storms: If your property is in an area which is prone to high activity storms, you may require windows which are hurricane resistant. So, you may have to have ones which regulate the amount of pressure that they’re rated to withstand. Plus, they may have to be able to withstand wind speeds of a particular level.
  • Areas of high heat or extreme cold: If your property is in a high temperature zone, the windows may need to have a better solar heat gain coefficient. It will regulate how much sun is let in the in. If you live in a freezing climate, you may have to have double or triple paned models.
  • If you’re on a fault line: For the building in this area, you need to have the windows be safety glazed heat tempered, so they don’t shatter.

There are many reasons to replace windows in your commercial building.

The Benefits of Covered Parking in Commercial Parking Lots

Tenants in a commercial building are concerned about parking. People don’t like to park their cars somewhere where they need to walk three blocks to get to a rental property. By having a covered parking garage for your tenants, you will not only make the businesses who rent your building happy, but this is a great selling point for the next business building renter.

Why is it a good idea?
There are lots of benefits for covered parking beside tenant comfort. It will protect cars from severe weather conditions. The cars won’t become dented, have windows broken or paint scratched from broken branches or other weather hazards. Parking under cover will keep the cars out of the sun and prevent UV radiation damage too. UV radiation damage can deteriorate the inside and outside of a car

Another key point is that covered parking can protect your tenants from rain, snow, sleet and heavy wind. No more fighting the elements when all the people are trying to do is get to their cars. Also, vandalism and theft are less likely because the cars aren’t exposed outside. Plus, some garages have attendants to make sure that the cars are left undisturbed.

Also for you tenants, some insurance policies will lower their premiums if a car they insure is in a protected environment. It’s a great point to mention to prospective tenants when showing property for office rental. Plus, since the exterior of the cars will be protected, this will help car owners with the resale value when reselling their cars. With fewer dings and scratches, the car stays looking good.

Other benefits
Other advantages of parking under cover is that you can reserve spots for tenants only to use. That way each tenant has his or her own reserved spot for parking. The tenants won’t have to battle it out doing street parking for a spot every day. They can just pull in, park and go about their day.

Having a covered parking area for your commercial building really is an excellent idea.

Toilet Options for Commercial Buildings

When you have a multi-family dwelling or rental properties, keeping the cost of utilities down is important. Installing high-efficiency toilets can help with this. If the tenant pays the water bill, it’s a good selling point too, or if you pay for the water, it helps you save money. If you have the water-intensive toilets in your building, they can use up to 7 gallons of water each time they’re flushed. A high-efficiency toilet uses about 55 percent less. So, what are your water efficient toilet options?

Water efficient toilet options
There are three different types of water efficient toilets. The single-flush will flush at 1.6 gallons each time, the dual-flush with 1.6 gallons for solids and 0.8 gallons for liquids. The third option is the pressure assist flush which is one gallon per flush.

The pressure assist toilets are used most often in commercial buildings, restrooms, and hotels. They can also be installed in private homes too. There’s a plastic pressure tank which is inside the reservoir of this commode. It compresses air inside the pressure tank from the pressure of the water line. It traps the air and compresses it as the main tank fills with water. The water is forced into the bowl by the compressed air when the commode is flushed. This action will push everything out with the flush with less water than other tanks use.

Another way to save on the water bill is to install low flow urinals in a men’s room. If you have a high traffic volume in the men’s room, a low flow urinal can save your money.

Figure it this way, you own a commercial building, and each employee uses the bathroom four times a day. So, you take the number of employees multiplied the number of flushes, and you’ll see that this is a lot of water. If you have toilets and urinals which conserve water though, you’ll find that the toilets are cost effective.

If you have a commercial property with older commodes, then you may want to consider updating your bathrooms with efficient ones.

What Different Types of Exterior Finishes Can Be Used on Commercial Property

There are different types of finishes which can be used on the outside of commercial buildings, multi-family dwellings and apartments. These finishes can be used for decorative purposes or weatherproofing or a combination of both. Below are some different types of exterior finishes:

  • Stucco: This is a weatherproof and decorative finish which can be put directly onto bricks, blocks or metal laths. It comes in three different types of finishes. The first one is smooth stucco which has a slight texture on a smooth finish. Patterned stucco has patterns tooled onto a smooth stucco finish. The third is Pebbledash; this look can be achieved by putting on a coat of smooth stucco which is damp and throwing pebbles at it.
  • Pebbles finish: This finish is applied by using cement mortar to paste small pebbles to the walls. This type of finish can be applied on an exterior facade. It can also be used in exterior landscaping for waterfalls for a beautiful look.
  • Flakes finish: This material is used on exterior facades. It’s additionally used to add to the elevation treatment of a dwelling or commercial building. The flakes are put on walls with a trowel over a coat of adhesive. It is not used indoors because of even a small amount of flakes falling off inside over time is unsightly.
  • Siding: Siding is used on the outside of a building over a wood cavity wall. It can be used as a decorative side effect but also as weather proofing. There are options such as wooden boards, but siding comes in vinyl, alumni and fiber cement board too. These options need less upkeep than wood siding does. Plus, some of the options can be painted for a more personalized look.
  • Tile cladding: tile comes in granite, glazed, marble or vitrified tiles. It comes in different shapes and colors. Where it is used depends on what types of tiles can be applied to the building.

There are lots of choices for exterior finishes to make a commercial building better looking and more rent-able.

Pros and Cons of Different Roof Coatings

35067309_sIf you own a commercial building, you may want to consider roof coating for the roof. This is because when you coat your roof, it acts like another barrier to protect the roof from the sun’s rays. It does this by increasing the UV protection which also helps to reduce the energy cost of the building. Another thing that roof coatings do on commercial property is to help prevent the ponding of water with varying degrees of effectiveness depending upon the product. So below are the strengths and weaknesses of different coating materials so that you can make an intelligent choice when you do this job.

  • Acrylic roof coatings are good for most climates and are cost effective. It’s water based and is reflective; easy to use and UV resistant. However; acrylics need to be applied when the temperature is 50 degrees or above. Plus; acrylics will also lose mil thickness with the weathering; and in situations where ponding is normal after every rain, it doesn’t do well.
  • Polyurethane roof coating handles traffic and is more resistant to impact than the other coatings. Also, aromatic and aliphatic are the two main types of polyurethane coatings. For a base coat, aromatic coating is usually used because it’s not UV stable. Aliphatic coatings are more UV stable, are cleaner and hold color well, but are also more expensive.
  • Silicone roof coatings won’t get brittle or hard. Furthermore, it’s good in water ponding situations and is erosion resistant. With silicone being moisture cured, the weather being humid even helps with the curing. The down side is that silicone will hold dirt, but when it rains, the rain acts as a cleaner. But because of this; over time, the material will lose its reflectivity. Plus; silicone is difficult to adhere to so when the roof needs redone, you either have to either remove the silicone or use something that’s compatible with it.

Having a coating put on your roof is an excellent solution if feasible, instead of just having a shingled roof. But get the advice of a trusted professional for the right and needed roof application.

How to Maintain a Sound Roof

When you own a commercial building, having a written roof maintenance plan is important. Because when your maintenance plan is written down, then you have more of a chance to catch areas which need repaired. In addition, there are two steps in a good plan to keep the roof on your commercial property leak free. Plus, you need to make sure that your roof has regular repairs when needed and that the roof is inspected frequently by a professional contractor.

36801614 - flat roof with skylight and hydro insulation membranesSo, how often should you have roof inspections done so regular repairs can be done? Recommendations for inspections are for twice a year, once in the spring and once in the fall. This will let you catch any roof damage before it gets out of hand. However; if you live in a climate which has severe temperature changes or severely harsh winters, then you may want to inspect it more often. Also, a competent person should check your roof out after having any construction on the roof so you are assured it was done right; or above it and after any major storms. Plus; if you’ve had a fire, installation of any new equipment or vandalism, check the roof for damage. By keeping up with roof repairs, it saves you money in the long run.

In addition, you can do a roof inspection yourself or have a professional roof inspector do it for you. A roof inspector will inspect the following areas:

  • The gutters, drains and scuppers
  • The rooftop units and the penetrations
  • The field of the roof or the surface area
  • The expansions, control joints, roof edges, flashings and terminations

Now if a problem is found and you’re having vetted professionals fix your roof, you can relax knowing that they know what they’re doing. Also, you will receive a warranty guaranteeing the work for a period of time. If you’re handy and can perform the repairs yourself though, you still need to develop an orderly plan for the issues that you’ve identified. In addition, repairs on a roof should be analyzed individually to decide if the job can be done by you or outsourced.

Following a roof inspection plan will save you money in the long run.

Different Types of Buildings Exteriors

When choosing the look for the exterior of your commercial building, what you want is something functional, durable and professional in appearance. Also, for commercial buildings, there are many different types of materials to make your choice from based on design and cost. So below is an assortment of exterior choices for your building:

11741271 - new shopping centerExteriors of mortarless brick will withstand weather damage and small impacts better than materials made of regular brick. Since mortarless doesn’t require a masonry contractor, unlike brick which is mortared brick, it costs less too. Plus, it has a professional, clean look to it.

Real brick or stone can break when it’s hit. However; synthetic stone or brick doesn’t break as easily. In addition, it looks like real brick or stone and is waterproof and flame resistant. So this choice gives the look of stone, but without the maintenance problem that stone or brick have.

Another option is fiber-cement siding. This consists of cement and rough sand mixed in with fiber which improves the durability aspect of it. It actually looks a lot like wood, but it lasts a lot longer than wood siding does.

Exterior Insulation Finishing System also known as EIFS. This material is a combination of insulation and finishing coats that provides a look to commercial buildings like synthetic stucco. When this method is used, it improves energy efficiency and adds extra insulation also. EIFS has a rough touch and has many finish and color options.

Split-face concrete blocks are split in half during the making of them so that they look like rough spoil-face concrete blocks. These blocks come in an assortment of colors and are several inches thick.

Metal siding has low maintenance and is ecofriendly since there’s little waste when applying it. It’s also resilient and fire resistant where even dents can be hammered out as opposed to cracked vinyl siding. Metal siding is usually used on modern style buildings.

In the end, it’s comes down to cost and what you prefer to use when you’re building your commercial building.

General Commercial Tenant Improvements

When you own a commercial building, improving the property can increase the value and attract a better quality tenant; a pretty much known fact. So with just a few improvements, the profit increase on the building rentals can rise impressively, and the resell value will go up too. Therefore; below are some ways to improve your commercial building:

  • Adding more square footage to your commercial property if needed can increase the demand for tenants. With this, you could add more storage, a conference area and additional office space for rental with the conference room. Also, by having a larger parking area; or even a covered parking area, this could help you get an edge on the competition.
  • You can increase the rental space inside. If there’s space which is not being used or there’s wasted space, say an area which is unfinished, it can be converted into profitable space. So a large storage area not being fully used can be cut into smaller spaces and what’s left over, after any needed storage space being taken into account, can be converted into offices.
  • Update your doors and windows because this will improve the appearance of your commercial rental property. So if the windows are poorly designed or outdated, update them into more efficient, state of the art windows. This will increase the natural light, cut down on noise and reduce the heating/cooling bill.
  • If you give the property a new coat of paint, it will refresh the outside appearance without having to do anything structural. Installing siding is another way to give the building a more updated look too. Plus, if you use a professional landscaping service, this can improve the look of the surrounding area outside the building.
  • When redoing the parking area, consider increasing security and the amount of parking spaces. By installing gates and alarm systems additionally it will make prospective tenants and the tenants you already have feel safer. Also, if your area is prone to criminal activity, consider hiring a private guard for the parking area and grounds.

These are just some of the general improvements on your commercial property that you can make.

Maintaining a Front Marque on a Commercial Building

The outside of your commercial building can sell what’s inside. This is why it’s important to maintain the front marque of your commercial building. Because if you have graffiti on your marque; as in on a building, it not only looks unkempt and neglected, but it sends out the wrong message to potential tenants. Also, graffiti make people think that the area is unsafe and can invite further vandalism along with its unwelcoming appearance. A well maintained marque is welcoming though and can send the message that your building is a safe one. So how can maintaining a marque work well for your business? Below are some suggestions:

  • Look beneath the surface. Sometimes an older building may have a beautiful architectural detail which has been covered up for years by a marque. This design though can be an asset to your building and attract the right type of tenants though. But if the building is older, first see if your building is a historic or a landmark building; there are different rules and regulations governing everything here including signs.
  • Decide what changes you could make to change the appearance of your marque. Don’t use anything that will make a visual clutter such as garish paint. Look around at your neighbors too and see what ideas you can gather from what they did to their marques.
  • Make sure you follow regulations and zoning guidelines. Some cities and municipalities have zoning ordinances for sign requirements. Also check and see what permits you’ll need before you change anything in your building.
  • Be sure to have bright light to deter crime. By using inviting lighting, it can make a perspective tenant feel welcomed and safe. Lighting, when used correctly, can enhance your building. Remember all lighting should be done by a licensed professional. Too, signs that illuminate may not be zoned for your area.
  • Another cost effective method to have your marque stand out is paint. Use a color of paint that will accent your building though and not make it stand out in the wrong way.

When improving the façade of your building, always keep in mind the architectural features.