Small Apartment(24-unit) Common Area Cleaning

4 Replies

HI BPers,

    Wanted to get some feedback on how you manage the Common Area Cleaning? We purchased the property in spring, so the lawncare company was doing the work, when they took care of the lawn. I am not very happy with the cleanliness, knowing they are there only once a week or so, makes it harder too. For a bigger property, it might make sense to have onsite crew to manage that as well, but being a small property, would not be optimal. Do you hire somebody to clean more often? I would rather have the residents not mess up the area as much. Any tips on what has worked to manage that?



What do they charge, the lawn company for cleaning the common areas?  How good does it look when they first clean it.  I would imagine a cleaning person would do a better job.  I would just have the cleaning person do it once a week and see how it goes.  How many floors are there and how many apartments on each floor?  How can the tenants be dirtying the common areas?  

I remember walk up in the village in New York and they always looked clean?

We have a gardener/landscaper at our 8-plex every two weeks to mow, edge and trim. We have our property assistant visit the property once a week to tidy up the shared coin-op laundry room and pickup around the grounds. She reports back to us if she sees anything out of the ordinary. We also strive to develop a community culture of tenants looking out for one another and "You see it, you own it!" Our most common problem is unauthorized people using our dumpster. The better we pay attention to the property, the more secure the tenants feel and the more pride they take in living there.

Start by advertising exactly what you want done with a scope of work as if you were hiring a contractor doing work on your property.  Put it out to bid and get a few offers. Include everything as a package deal. And negotiate to get your best price. 

I have 2 properties with common areas like this and have had good luck offering a clean, long-term tenant that could use a discount a discount for cleaning twice a week.

I drew up a 'work' addendum to her annual notice of rent increase.  Basically states she gets a $50/mo discount for vacuuming and sweeping on Mon & Thur- be specific.  Had to suggest we just exchange checks once a few years ago when I didn't think it was being done right as a reminder, but overall I am satisfied.

Also tried hiring the mom of the majority of the messes.  Thought it would help but  it didn't.  She just took the discount and didn't do the work.  I would try and employ your own worthy tenant @Chandra Venkat .  They appreciate the discount, too!

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