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Upgrading Older Offices

February 6, 2017

When you think of a person who was born in the 80s, you may think of their tight-rolled jeans, mall bangs, VHS tapes and Polaroid cameras. Now, think of an office building built in the same decade. How is it standing up to current expectations in terms of style and technology?

It shouldn’t surprise you that the majority of suburban offices were built during the Reagan Era, and many of them haven’t seen a significant upgrade since. If properties in your portfolio could use a millennial makeover to provide the assets and amenities today’s business professional is seeking, consider the following updates:

Make An Entrance

The first thing a potential tenant sees is your building’s entrance, so make it memorable. Create a space that is open, well-lit and easy for visitors to navigate. You may also want to include an element that is particularly dynamic or eye-catching, such as a piece of statement art, interesting accent wall, unique light fixture or water feature. Just be sure that your choices are timeless – don’t choose elements that could become dated quickly.

Add Amenities

Today’s workforce expects more perks than ever, so you may want to consider carving out space for a fitness center, cafeteria, or even a garden area in your building. Although the upfront execution of these elements can be costly, the long-term payoff will be apparent as tenants are attracted to your building and feel incentivized to stay.

Update Systems and Structures

A key to tenant satisfaction is the overall environment in the office, yet the average age of an office HVAC system is 15 years. Ensuring that your space is not too hot and not too cold should be a priority, so consider an upgrade before you open your facility to tenants or potential buyers.

Along the same lines, a commercial roofing system is expected to last roughly 20 years. Do the math – properties built in the ‘80s are likely due for maintenance, if not a replacement. This upkeep is essential in preventing problems for business tenants and, ultimately, securing lease renewals.

If you are an owner, giving your property the necessary updates and upgrades puts you in a position to stand out in the market, fill available space and secure lease renewals. Work with your Intelica broker to determine which improvements make the most sense for your property.