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Cleaning & Maintenance Guide for Property Managers

Managing all of the units in an apartment complex or office building can be a logistical nightmare. With so many units occupied by so many different tenants with varying needs and reliability, it can be a lot to manage.

Luckily, we’ve put together this guide to help you manage your condo complex or office building so it is always in tip-top shape.


Evaluate the Individual Units Between Tenants

Good maintenance of office and apartment complexes starts with proper care of the individual units. While you can try as hard as possible to make sure a new tenant will take proper care of the space, the most you can do is make sure it is properly maintained between tenants. Not only will this help the space be more attractive to new tenants, it will encourage the new tenant to take good care of the unit.

Once the previous tenant has moved out, evaluate it for:

  • Damage to walls
  • Stains on carpets
  • Damage to large appliances like refrigerators or dishwashers
  • Cracked or dirty windows
  • Pest infestations
  • Mold

Fix the issues you find immediately. It will be significantly harder to fill the space if you don’t fix these problems. Potential new tenants will want to see a finished unit before signing a lease. Every day the unit is not occupied you are losing money.

After a tenant moves out, consider:

  • Repainting the walls
  • Replacing any damaged carpet or flooring
  • Changing the locks on the unit
  • Properly cleaning the unit


Ongoing Cleaning and Maintenance

People don’t want to live or work in an unclean environment. If you are managing a large apartment building or condo complex, there is a lot of space to clean. Managing this much cleaning, from floors to bathrooms, can be exhausting. Filthy surfaces completely filled waste baskets, and dirty bathrooms are unacceptable for a reputable space.

While your tenants will always have to perform some basic cleaning themselves, you are going to be expected to carry a lot of the heavy lifting, particularly in an office environment.

In addition to more basic janitorial services like cleaning bathrooms and emptying waste bins, there are other, more involved services to think about. Below, we’ve put some you will have to perform.

Floor and Carpet Cleaning

Walking on sticky, stained carpet or flooring is never an inviting prospect. It reflects poorly on a business’s image, and people do not want to see it when walking into their apartment building. Unfortunately, dirty floors are unavoidable.


Dirty floors reflect poorly on your business. Also, continuously unclean floors will have to be replaced much sooner, costing you more money in the long run to maintain.

For well-kept floors, you will need to do the following:

  • Seal and wax
  • Polish
  • Remove stains

Most floor cleaning companies will be able to handle everything from concrete to ceramic tile.

Don’t ruin your floors or leave a bad first impression with dirty floors!


Often property managers think they need to replace their carpets when really all they need to do is properly maintain and clean them.

We recommend having your carpets cleaned twice a year to keep them looking great and not degrading. They will look nice, and last longer than uncleaned carpets.

Waste and Recycling Management

Waste management will be something you need to be on top of to ensure the cleanliness of your building. Trash build up will lead to unsanitary conditions on your property. The last thing you want to deal with are pests infiltrating your apartment building or office.

To keep costs down, pay particular attention to the management of recycling in your building. Good recycling management will lessen your building’s trash bill. Make sure to properly sign your recycling and empty the bins as much as possible to ensure your tenants participate in your recycling program.

Window Cleaning

Nobody likes looking out a window and seeing a smudgy, dirty view. While it may be relatively easy to properly clean the inside of your windows, ensuring the cleanliness of the outside can be a tricky task.

Window exteriors should be cleaned twice a year, and professionals should be hired for the task. It is dangerous to try to perform yourself, particularly on windows of buildings over a story high!

A Note On Cleaning Supplies

Tenants hate living in filth. They do not want to work and live in a dirty space. They also hate the constant smell of chemicals and feeling like they are breathing in dangerous fumes.

To ensure tenants and guests don’t feel like they are breathing in noxious fumes, make sure to use environmentally friendly cleaning supplies. Not only will this make your tenants feel better, it will be safer and better for the environment.


Common Rooms

Common areas are an often overlooked area of apartment buildings. Since no one tenant is responsible for taking care of the space, clutter and trash can build up in the room. It is also one of the main spaces guests and potential new tenants see when they enter the building, so it is particularly important to keep it clean. Make sure that the room is checked regularly for dirty dishes, left out items, and trash.



It doesn’t matter if you are managing an apartment building or office, there will be landscaping to be done. Landscaping projects an image for your building and is the first thing greeting your tenants or their guests when they are approaching your building. Make this space look beautiful!

A couple landscaping features needing maintenance:

  • Lawn or grassy areas
  • Bushes and hedges
  • Plants and flowers
  • Gutter cleaning


Trusted Cleaning and Maintenance Service Providers

While some property managers may be able to have employees on staff to help them clean and maintain their building, most do not. Property managers have a lot of tasks and need to be focused on managing the building, not maintaining it.

This makes hiring good people to clean and maintain your space crucial for a well-run building. Think about hiring companies for:

Since time is tight as a property manager, we recommend finding a company that can perform as many of these tasks as possible.


Let’s Talk!

Cascade Building Services can help with your janitorial and maintenance service needs.

Call Cascade Building Services today at (503) 691-0776 for a free, no-obligation quote. If you’re located in the Portland or Vancouver metro areas, we’d love to show how we can help with all your office or apartment building cleaning needs.

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