When you inspect a commercial, retail or industrial property, the physical aspects of the property should be well explored and documented. These matters below are some of the key issues for you to review before you complete the property listing or promotion.
Tenant compliance to physical building use: The tenants to a building may be obliged to comply with how they use the building. Such matters will be detailed in the lease, and you should read the leases in this regard to identify these things.
Antennas and aerials: Some buildings feature communication antennas and aerials. In the first instance, these should have been approved by the landlord and, in some circumstances, the
local planning authority. The antenna or aerial installation will have been made on the approved structures with supporting plans and documentation and access restrictions, and risk signage to prevent people in the area from being exposed to radiofrequency radiation. You need to know that these things have been correctly handled.
Asbestos: It is common knowledge that asbestos is a hazardous material in buildings constructed before 1990. From that time onwards, it was largely avoided and prohibited as a construction material in most buildings. Originally it was used as an insulation material in areas including electrical switchboards and on the beams and columns of the building structure as a fire-resistant material.
It is, therefore, quite possible that you will sell or lease a building in which asbestos is still located. In your town or city, there will be legislation rules and regulations that apply to the existence of asbestos. You must get information from the building owner regards compliance with Legislation in this regard.
Asset replacement value: With commercial real estate properties, it is common for regular valuations to be undertaken by the building owner for asset replacement insurance. This type of valuation would be applicable in the event of a fire or building disaster. You can also get building replacement values from information sheets provided by local quantity surveyors, and you can usually obtain these from the internet. Importantly the construction costs and replacement value need to apply to your location given the costs of sourcing the construction materials and the labor.
Building Code Compliance: When buildings are first constructed, they are done so to the current building code. As time progresses, the building code changes, and it is sometimes necessary for existing buildings to be upgraded to current code. A good example of this is the need for disabled access to buildings and internal disabled facilities.
When you inspect and list a building, you should identify any such notices that currently exist under the building code. A note of caution here; when a building is put through a major refurbishment, the planning authority may regard the refurbishment activity as a trigger for a code compliance upgrade. This can be a high cost, and a quantity surveyor is the best person to consult on costs of this nature.
Floor and site surveys: When working with investment properties, the internal lettable space is of prime importance to the generation of rental and occupancy. All the leases for the tenants will be linked to the survey plans and the net lettable area therein. For this reason, you should ask to see the survey plans for
the building and the lettable space. You need to know that they are accurate and up to date at the time of sale or lease. Part of this process is to inspect the property with the plans to identify any discrepancies. In all cases of error or concern with the plans, you should get a building surveyor to give assistance and guidance.
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