Everything is great when it’s working. But, then, one day, it’s not. From our vehicles to our homes, it’s human nature to put maintenance on the back burner. After all, daily responsibilities consume our time, so if something doesn’t need our immediate attention, we sometimes let it go.
However, there comes a day when that catches up to us and whatever maintenance we put on hold now becomes our main focus. This behavior is known as the reactive approach to maintenance, meaning we only react when something is broken. At this point, it’s gone from maintenance to repair.
Instead, a better approach would be to choose preventative maintenance, especially when it comes to managed communities. Here’s why:
Often, community maintenance is deferred due to a lack of budgeting and access to funds. However, it fits the old adage of trying to be pennywise but end up as pound foolish. This means that by thinking you are saving money now by not doing the maintenance, you most likely will end up discovering that this approach can cost you much more money because the work has gone from a maintenance expense to a repair or replacement cost. Therefore, it becomes much more cost-effective to create a preventative maintenance plan and schedule for your community.
Although it may take more time upfront to put a preventative maintenance plan together and set up a schedule to enact it, this will produce better results later on when that swimming pool is not closed for half the summer season or the security gate is out of order for weeks.
No matter what the size of the maintenance issue, preventative approaches work to solve issues before they happen or become even larger problems.
When bushes are trimmed, community lighting is maintained, and the amenities look stellar, a neighborhood can protect itself from falling prey to criminals. With everything bright and clean, there is nowhere to hide and no easy opportunities to commit a crime.
Since it’s easy to get caught up in the daily issues, looking ahead by the season may not be common practice. However, when focusing on preventative maintenance, there is a structured format that often aligns with seasonal changes. For example, community pool maintenance may involve getting it ready for closure and reopening, which means it is an opportunity to clean pool filters, check for pipe leaks, and test that the pump is working at maximum efficiency. Or, if spring and warmer weather is approaching, it’s the time to examine park play equipment or clean and repair clubhouse patio furniture. In doing so, you will always be looking ahead and preparing for these seasonal changes in your community.
The more maintenance and care each aspect of a community, the longer it will last. That provides enhanced value in cost savings and time, also helping to keep assessment increases to a minimum. Everyone wants their money to go farther, so this is one way to ensure that it does.
Beyond the landscape and amenities, preventative maintenance can also mean office equipment, software, and technology that you use to manage your community. You will begin to look at these types of areas, too, and discover how important it is to add these items to your maintenance list. For example, doing so could help protect community data from cybercriminals.
If equipment and community amenities are regularly maintained, there is less risk of an accident where a resident or visitor might get injured. This includes addressing common area hazardous elements related to structures, landscape, and amenities. Not trimming those trees, changing a lightbulb, or cleaning the pool filter could lead to health and safety risks that never had to happen. Preventative maintenance for these community areas can also help increase the integrity of a structure and prevent damage when there is inclement weather like wind, rain, or snow.
Preventative maintenance leads to fewer complaints by residents because everything in their community is in good, working order. They aren’t missing out on using amenities because they are closed.
Residents will be happy to discover that focusing on preventative maintenance keeps the community looking as beautiful as ever. Beyond the pleasing aesthetics, this will also keep property values higher and making it an in-demand place to live.
You don’t have to do it alone when it comes to figuring out a preventative maintenance plan. Once you decide that is the best plan of action for your community, consider working with a partner like Innovia who offers the knowledge and experience of many other managed communities.
You will benefit from the team’s expertise, as well as your fellow members in Innovia’s co-operative structure, and access helpful preventive maintenance best practices such as reserve studies, preventative maintenance plans and schedules, online maintenance request tools, and more. Contact us now to get started on your community’s preventative maintenance program.