Rebuilding an old commercial property is an exciting opportunity to take something old and make it function again, while possibly retaining the old beauty of the structure. However, it can also be very challenging as you could find things out of code, falling apart, or even unsafe. When taking on this type of project, you need to have a network of contractors with experience working with old buildings who will understand your goals while also having the skills and ability to make those goals a reality.
Here are a few services to consider when networking with other contractors.
Many old buildings were built with asbestos in the insulation or asbestos tiles, which can be dangerous when removed as asbestos has been linked to cancer when inhaled. Getting an inspection done before buying the building will reveal if you have an asbestos concern in the building and how concerned you need to be; asbestos removal can be expensive. It is illegal to remove asbestos without trained professionals.
Depending on the type of old building, you may have gotten equipment as part of the deal. While that can be a significant benefit, you may need to make the equipment usable. For example, depending on the type of truck, you may need to look into lift truck fork replacement, new switches, or straps to make it safe. Your replacement expert can examine the vehicle to show you lift heights and safe lifting capacity.
When looking at the roof of an old commercial building, you need to determine if the current roof is salvageable or if you even want to salvage it. Rebuilding may be an excellent time to install a more practical roof. Many options depend on the type of roof your commercial building has, whether it be a pitched roof or a flat roof. You can use composition roofing, asphalt roof shingles, or metal roofs. Roofing can be expensive. However, it is an investment in the property. Work with a roofing company that has plenty of experience in the type of roofing you choose for the building as installation needs vary.
Electrical wiring in old buildings can be highly questionable. You’ll need a highly experienced electrician to come in and inspect everything to determine what may need to be replaced if there are immediate safety concerns, as well as the best approach to the entire project. While rewiring the building, you need to work with the electrician to determine what lighting layout will work best for how you plan to use the new space.
Plumbing in old buildings can be decaying and leak in many places. When you try to repair old plumbing, you risk constantly dealing with leaks as the water will always break through the next weakest spot when you fix a link. When it comes to old plumbing, it is best to replace it all with new PVC plumbing so you don’t have to worry about erosion or theft. Like the electrical work, as long as you are reworking the plumbing, you can work with your plumber to determine the best layout for the new space regarding bathroom placement and other water sources.
Don’t let the amount of work needed on the property deter you from buying and rebuilding an old commercial property. The rewards of the endeavor can be significant both financially and personally. If you can restore some of the original lusters of the building, you can also add significantly to the surrounding area and make it something worth seeing. Historic commercial buildings, even highly industrial ones, can be landmarks in the communities where they are located.