COVID-19 took a toll on the economy like a blazing storm. Everything came to an almost stand-still because of the lockdown which kept extending in some cities. But as there is light at the end of the tunnel, the vaccine is also almost around the corner. It is for this reason that many businesses are preparing themselves to face the post-lockdown consequences.
Commercial real-estate, among travel and other businesses, has taken a major hit. It is essential that the economy should be revived where everyone is taking extensive measures to do so. The term ‘new normal’ is being considered when we think about life after lockdown. But what does new normal mean when it comes to the commercial real estate sector?
How will commercial property management take place once it has been re-opened?
There are many practical instances which the landlord and tenants can consider like:
1.Social distancing at the office space is already being prepared for by the tenants and landlords. The landlord might have to work along with the tenant with regards to social distancing issues like how people should maintain distance in lift and lobbies, how will fire evacuation procedure varies, and how meeting points should be limited down. The main aim of the landlord should be that people can get in and out of the building easily.
2. It is important that after the re-opening, tenants should make sure to handle their customers, clients, and employees. The login time, log out time and the break times should be conveyed effectively with the landlord. Social distancing should be ensured by the tenant through separate desk spaces. The number of members in each office can be curbed down. The break areas in the offices can be limited for effective social distancing.
3. It should be ensured that the building systems are up to date since most of the property spaces might have switched off the air conditioning or might have reduced it to a minimal level. The building managers should be assigned tasks to maximize the external air. Before any of the systems are restarted, the equipment should be inspected, cleaned, and serviced.
4. While there are no guidelines yet with regards to health and safety, it is important that the landlords and tenants should take care of their visitors, occupiers, and staff. Many safety measures can be taken like adding hand sanitizers, keeping washing facilities near the common places in the office, keeping appropriate signage about the importance of social distancing, opting for only 1 way system, testing of the temperatures, cleaning the buildings consistently, and guiding people to dispose of waste appropriately. Many other hygiene facilities can also be considered by the landlords and the tenants.
For time being, the landlords and tenants have agreed on a mutual understanding with regards to the payment of rent but post lockdown, many of the real estate agents for the commercial units are advising their clients to provide fifty percent concession, which is in monthly rent. The concession is given to the tenant if they have been paying rent.
Many office space operators are taking extensive measures for effective commercial property management post-lockdown. The commercial space operators like Vatika, DLF, and M3M have decided not to allow online and food delivery personnel, intimating tenants to have a stock of protective equipment, keeping appropriate distance in lifts, and making sure that there is an ambulance for back up.
They have stated out in the SOP regarding the methods to sanitize the commercial space, keeping temperature checking devices available for people who enter the building, sanitizing and hand-washing amenities for automobiles, and guidelines on handling the COVID-19 medical emergency. The tenants have been recommended to include cold fogging chemicals, disinfectants, face masks, hand sanitizers, and hand gloves to the avail of the employees.
After the lockdown, people will have to install the Aarogya Setu app so that their respective zones can be checked. The operators are also considering adding a quarantine room in case of an emergency. They have also crafted a vehicle movement plan in a detailed way where the basement access will be impeded.
While post-lockdown measures are being considered, the Ministry of Home Affairs (MHA) has issued some guidelines with regard to how workplaces will function in this currently extended lockdown.
- The workplaces should make sure that there is a compulsion of wearing face masks where ample stock of these face masks should be provided to the people
- All those who are in charge of the workplace should make sure that social distancing is being followed according to the guidelines issued by the Ministry of Health and Family Welfare. This should be implied not only in company areas but also in the company commute.
- Amenities like hand wash, thermal scanning, and sanitizers should be made available in the common areas, entry points, and exit points. The workplaces should have adequate stock of the sanitizers and hand wash.
- Between the shifts, persistent sanitization of the workplace, and also common facilities inclusive of doorknobs, door handles, etc. should be done.
- People above 65 years of age, pregnant women, people with co-morbidities, and children below 10 years of age should stay at home where an exception can be made for meeting the essential requirements and also for the health purpose.
- All the employees should compulsorily use the Arogya Setu app, be it public or private. It is the head of the organization’s responsibility to make sure that all of the employees are using the app
- There should be an avoidance of large physical meetings
- A list of clinics or Hospitals nearby to the workplace which is authorized to treat Corona Virus patients should be made available. If any of the employees showcase symptoms of COVID-19, they should be sent for a check-up at those clinics or hospitals.
- All of the areas of quarantine should be earmarked to isolate the employees who are showing symptoms until they are moved to the medical facilities.
Hence, the commercial property owners, through the above nitty-gritty, can prepare their properties appropriately so that tenants and employees alike can conduct their day-to-day operations with ease. It is only through these extensive measures that we can re-open the commercial properties and gain back stride in the economy.
One can get in touch with the property management company to manage your commercial properties with ease so that you can take relief from that and focus on your work. Ownerstown is a smart property management application where you can manage your property by maintaining social distancing.
Read our latest blog: how one can maintain social distancing using Ownerstown
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