What Happens to a Building as It Ages?
The age of a building can be a good indicator of what types of costs might be involved in the property. Strata corporations are responsible for the upkeep of any common assets of the building.
Using the age of the building can be an asset in predicting what sorts of issues might occur. While this is just an overview of the different stages of life of a building, hopefully it will give your strata some ideas as to what to look for as your building ages.
0-2 years of age
This is the general period right after the construction of the building when all of the assets should still be under warranty. Repair costs in this period are typically covered under equipment warranties.
Maintenance should focus on making sure that the building is in a move-in state and doing any preventative maintenance required by manufacturers to keep warranties active. This period may last as long as 5 years or greater for some components, but depending on warranties, might expire sooner.
Post-warranty expiration to 15 years
During this period, owners and strata corporations should not be surprised by low cost replacement projects. It may seem that the building is not very old, but equipment can break. If it is going to do so, it typically happens just outside the warranty period. Maintenance schedules should focus on upkeep and routine tasks to keep equipment running at peak performance. There may be some minor repairs to perform during this timeframe.
16 to 30 years
During this period of time, many of the buildings assets will be reaching the end of their life. This means the longer into this period the building goes, the more expensive equipment replacements might need to be done.
Examples of major replacement projects include things like re-roofing, heating boilers, major plumbing systems or even elevator control systems. Maintenance during this age period should focus on major assets. This includes looking into structural type things like window seals that might need to be replaced.
There will also be a large number of repairs that need to be done. Stratas will need to plan carefully during this time to ensure funding is available to meet asset needs.
During this time, maintenance becomes a challenge. Since many items have been repaired or replaced in the previous years, careful watch must be kept over assets as they are no longer the same age and may be deteriorating at different rates. Critical systems can continue to be monitored, but it might also be time for a major redecoration of the building, as times change. Other assets that might need major overhauls are things like roadways or fire alarm systems.
There is not much difference between this stage and the previous stage. In many cases major systems have been replaced and can be new or near new in condition. Structural issues may begin to crop up if the building is prone to them due to design flaws. Buildings can remain in this stage for many years to come if careful upkeep is done to keep it in good condition.
Contact us today for any assistance on a depreciation report for any age of building.