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Vacant property management service launched by G4S

G4S Secure Solutions (UK And Ireland) : 26 November, 2008  (New Product)
Security Services company G4S to provide protection service for the increasing number of at-risk vacant properties in major UK cities
G4S Security Services (UK) has launched a specialist vacant property service to provide a secure solution to a growing problem faced by commercial property owners and managing agents. It is reported that vacant office space in the City of London alone is up 46% on last year to 7.8 million square feet, a trend likely to be reflected in major cities across the UK.

With the number of empty properties likely to increase, G4S warns that property managers need to be aware of the potential risks associated with leaving these buildings unattended. Vacant premises remain a tax liability, with overheads that still need to be paid, even though the buildings may not be generating income. If utilities are left to run, this can impact on the environment and create further costs; issues equally high on the agendas of businesses throughout the UK.

In addition to the obvious threats posed by fire, theft and criminal damage, G4S says that companies could see their vacant properties devalue significantly, whether through environmental deterioration or if illegally accessed by squatters or other intruders. Fly-tipping in and around a building, along with graffiti, provide strong visual clues that it is falling into disrepair. By maintaining a secure and well-presented property, G4S says that this will act as a deterrent to those looking to exploit vacant space.

Executives should also be mindful of their company's liabilities and duty of care, according to G4S. With a number of health risks surrounding vacant properties G4S suggests that property management companies should ensure that they are not endangering the wellbeing of their staff, particularly those tasked with managing vacant premises.

Richard Fenton-Jones, Managing Director, Monitoring and Response, G4S Security Services (UK) said, "The economic downturn has already resulted in a surge in vacant premises across the country. There are a number of risks associated with vacant properties - these risks can be mitigated if preventative action is taken."

Launched in partnership with the Clearway Group, the leading environmental services company, G4S Vacant Property Services offers a range of specialist services to owners and managers of vacant commercial properties, including:.

* A full risk assessment.
* Physical security protection, including security doors, window grilles and steel sheet.
* Temporary alarm installation and monitoring.
* Response service for alarm activations and emergency call-outs.
* Perimeter protection, key holding and mobile patrol services.
* Vacant property clearances and cleans.
* Steam cleaning and removal of graffiti.
* Vermin removal and pest control.
* General and hazardous waste removal.
* Abandoned vehicle collection.

Fenton-Jones concludes, "Using our existing patrol, monitoring, key holding and response services, coupled with the specialist skills of Clearway, we can now offer a comprehensive solution to property managers and owners. "
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