A two-story office building in Bradenton, Florida, sat empty for five years after construction was completed, according to the Bradenton Herald. Five. Long. Years. The national recession and lack of business lending by local banks kept a number of companies from moving into the facility. Every office complex will deal with its share of vacancies, which can hurt the property’s value and make it difficult to stay ahead of expenses. Certain tools can help to not only rent offices but also keep tenants satisfied so that turnover is reduced. Lots of apple turnover, good. Lots of tenant turnover, bad.

Drop Vacancy Rates Like They’re Hot

The CoStar Group stated that commercial vacancy rates in Orange County declined to 13% during the fourth quarter of 2012. This matches a national trend that has increased the value of office buildings. Fewer openings give owners more control over pricing and many are choosing to increase asking prices for empty units. The average rental rate has increased to $21.63 per square foot.

Economic factors and the collapse of the housing market have limited the construction of new office buildings. However, as the economy recovers there are more startups and corporations looking to expand. This will increase demand for new construction, which may impact the ability of existing buildings to attract new renters.

“Growing cities and populations are sought after by retailers looking to expand and branch out into new cities making Columbia a target,” the State cited from a commercial real estate report about Columbia, South Carolina by Colliers International.

Getting Empty Units Rented

There are some things that building managers can do to make their vacant offices more attractive to tenants. The first is to make sure that all parts of the building are well-maintained and clean. We all know how important first impressions are, and that doesn’t stop at your building. A dirty entryway or walls and ceilings in need of repair could discourage potential buyers and displease current tenants. Orderly landscaping and a clean parking lot could be the reasons a company decides to move into a specific building.

Another aspect that attracts tenants is updated technology. Companies will depend on fast and reliable internet connections, offices fully equipped with the latest communication systems, and for some, sustainability. Updating lighting and heating units to keep costs down shows potential renters that the building owner is serious about providing the best services.

Software to keep track of maintenance assignments and work orders helps managers stay on top of all issues related to vacancies. Property and tenant management software improves coordination among crew members to boost productivity and efficiency, which can raise the satisfaction of existing tenants. Companies that know the building manager is available to quickly handle any issues that arise will be likely to remain in the building as long as they have sufficient space.