Maintenance & Repair of Commercial Properties: The Old Way vs. The New Way

There’s nothing wrong with taking a taxi to the airport. But is that really the best way to get there? After all, there are now apps like Lyft that will not only get you to the airport, they will get you there with transparent pricing and friendly drivers at the push of a button.

Sometimes the way we’ve always done things isn’t the best way to do things anymore. New technology comes out, new services are offered, and it behooves us to pay attention because this new way of doing things just might change our entire experience for the better.

Just like we have “old” and “new” ways of getting to the airport, property managers, property owners, and facility managers have old and new options for handling the process for the maintenance and repair of their commercial properties.

Does your maintenance and repair process fall under the old way?

Maintenance & Repair the Old Way

In-House Staff

In-house maintenance staff takes care of the daily maintenance and repair of the properties.

In-house staff receive wages and benefits (such as pension, medical, and vacation). Payroll, time keeping, labor relations, and HR matters for the maintenance staff are the company’s responsibility. Training and technology/equipment acquisition may also be costs absorbed by the company.

This arrangement seems to have one primary advantage: arguably, you have the most control over your own staff members, but the overhead of having them on payroll may be costly.

Outsourcing Individual Services

Individual providers perform each individual service.

An electrician is hired for electrical needs, a plumbing company for plumbing needs, an HVAC technician for heating and cooling, and so on.

The main advantage of this arrangement is having specialists handle each task. The downside of this process is having multiple contacts and many bills to pay. The building and property manager could potentially spend a lot of their time managing these outsourcing contracts.


A combination of in-house staff and outsourced providers perform maintenance and repair work.

Not all maintenance can be performed by in-house maintenance teams. For some assets, maintenance must be outsourced either because of a lack of skilled in-house staff or because the asset requires specialized equipment for proper care.

The hybrid process gives you the benefits of in-house staff and individual services, but it also gives you the potential downsides of both.

Maintenance & Repair the New Way

Multi-Maintenance and Repair Services by a Company that Self-Performs

One company provides maintenance and repair services with its own experienced employees.

This arrangement is designed to be efficient and make it as easy as possible for building and property managers to maintain and repair their building so they can focus on their primary tasks.

In this arrangement, you have one point of contact for carpentry, plumbing, electrical, general repair, and more. They become your trusted partner for your maintenance and repair services.

A trusted partner saves you time as you no longer have to call and keep track of five or more vendors. It also means you have only one vendor bill. The fewer vendor checks cut per month, the lower the accounting overhead, the higher the cost savings. You also don’t have the overhead costs associated with having your own employees, as discussed above.

Furthermore, one provider means all services and all property locations are cared for with the same standard of excellence.

Is it time to reconsider?

The new approach for maintenance and repair of commercial properties seeks to eliminate the frustrations of the old. The old ways are not wrong. But if you have in-house staff or have outsourced these services and you’re dealing with more frustrations than you bargained for, it’s probably time to consider a new way.


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