Doing it Yourself, and When to Call a Professional Keeping Common Areas Clean

No matter how conscientious your residents, no matter how dedicated your super and support staff, it’s inevitable: your building’s common areas are going to take a beating. Foot traffic can damage flooring, and everything from luggage to people’s hands can add wear-and-tear to walls and fixtures. There are steps your building’s staff can take, however, to lessen the potential for damage done, and to repair it once it happens. Here’s what you need to know, and when you’ll need to call in the professionals to keep your common areas looking their best.

Common High-Impact Areas

Every area of a residential building is prone to wear, but some areas are used more frequently than others. These are the areas you should consider when determining preventative measures, or implementing a cleaning plan.

“The highest traffic areas in a residential building are the lobby areas, elevator cabs, compactor and freight area entrances,” says Jay Ramos, president of Renotex Services Carpet & Furniture Cleaners in the Bronx. He adds that it’s also important to pay attention to areas that might not get a lot of foot traffic but which might be used often by workers, such as the areas leading to the mechanical elements of the building or the roof. Those areas can get pretty beat-up over time, and you don’t want them becoming your building’s dirty little secret.

“One point that a lot of buildings overlook is the top floor,” says Todd Saunders, president and chief executive officer of Cleaning Specialists of America, Inc. (CSA) in Long Island City. The top floor often leads to the mechanical equipment on the roof, and is where closets and conduits are located.

“This is an area where the walls or carpet get a beating from workers. When you know work is going to be done, cover the carpeting with a runner that will protect it,” says Saunders.

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