Property cycles tend to dictate how the property market will develop over a period of five to ten years. Their influence is reflected in fluctuating prices, public demand and vacancies. Usually, they are driven by business or economic factors, especially in the commercial property sector.
Most of the time, new builds are designed to meet the demands of these cycles. But with planning approval for major projects now taking over five years to process, now could be the time to think about designs that span the ages.
For a building’s design to ever truly transcend the restrictions of the property cycle, more research needs to be done on the area it is constructed in. In London, the diverse nature of each individual borough means that a design that works in Westminster won’t necessarily be a good fit for Dalston. Architecture and design should focus on the needs of the specific area and consider where it will be in another 20 to 30 years time.
Projects like this need to be affordable as well as innovative. If an area will mainly cater for small businesses, then there’s no point building offices that no local firm can afford to buy. Architects should be able to work alongside building maintenance companies to create properties that don’t’ compromise on either function or aesthetics.
If a building is to have a place in the commercial sector, it needs to provide a comfortable environment for all its occupants. It also needs to take into account the costing and budgeting restrictions of those people. Affordable housing will always be sought after, regardless of the financial climate. In areas of London such as Croydon, where the majority of people still live in housing provided by the council, the demand for lower rental prices is constant. There’s simply no need for luxury properties in this area. The residents want cheap, comfortable properties, which they know will be well maintained.
For this reason, architects need to look at the practicality of their designs, as well as their look. The main points of focus will be cost and comfort, so finding a way to keep building maintenance in London cost effective is paramount. This is where a building maintenance company can help out. By involving expert contractors in the initial design process, architects can begin to build towards a more sustainable final product. Lighting, HVAC and plumbing can all be installed with cost saving features to help lower the overall expense of the building. There’s also scope for natural ventilation or lighting, with properties designed to make the most of their surroundings.
A building maintenance company can also plan with aesthetics in mind. The ‘villages’ of London are known for their unique and diverse looks, which many feel would be undermined by affordable, block housing. However, inclusive design doesn’t have to occur at the same price as other properties in the area. If a building maintenance company is working with a specific blueprint, then they can fit their work around the plans. Whilst some ideas might be structurally impossible, a building maintenance expert can offer guidance on how to solve the issue.
Take Edgware as an example. Whilst this is a fairly urban suburb, the area surrounding it has a more rural appeal, especially along the canals of Little Venice. Finding a way to create affordable, well-serviced properties that transition into this rurality becomes the peak concern. At first, it may seem like a monumental task, but by combining the efforts of architects and building maintenance teams, the job becomes much more accessible. London needs a shake up in the way it handles construction and with both parties working in tandem, property cycles in the capital could be circumvented for good.
Blake’s Building Services have been at the heart of London’s property sector for over twenty years. Our team of building maintenance experts have worked in hundreds of commercial buildings in this time, installing, servicing and maintaining key systems. For more information on any of our services get in touch through our contact page or give us a call on 01634 862929.