The cost of graffiti and vandalism exceeds the monetary cost of clean-up, repair, and repainting. The hidden costs can hurt your bottom line as lost opportunities for future profits. Having a system in place to deter graffiti and vandalism and that allows you to respond quickly to remediate damage can reduce facilities costs and improve business in general. The use of video surveillance can help deter vandalism, including graffiti, and provide valuable information to law enforcement or insurance that may even lead to restitution. Here are seven ways graffiti may be costing you money and lost revenue.
Cleanup and Fines
The unlawful defacing of personal property is a crime and it costs an estimated $12 billion each year to clean up graffiti in the United States. Business owners may also incur a fine if the graffiti is not cleaned up in a timely manner. In addition, stores lose business when customers choose to shop somewhere else.
Reduced Property Value
It is hard to expect a buyer to pay top dollar for a property with graffiti that appears unmaintained. The mental association of graffiti with increased criminal activity in an area can make the property less desirable and reduce its value in the market.
To recruit and keep high-quality tenants, you need to be able to deliver a high-value space for their rent. A tenant who wants to sign a long-term lease and consistently pays their rent on time is a tenant that trusts that their business will be successful at that location. The presence of graffiti can deter renters from signing long-term leases and can result in increased vacancies as unoccupied properties take longer to be filled by tenants.
Loss of Renters
Graffiti and the appearance of deferred maintenance at a property will make tenants start looking for a new location for their business. Businesses need their customers to feel safe and to want to keep coming back to increase sales and residents may look elsewhere for housing if they do not feel secure in their surroundings or are ashamed to show friends where they live.
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A building or neighborhood with graffiti can invoke fear in the people who visit because they associate it with crime. Shoppers and clients don't want to visit a building that appears to be in a neighborhood with crime where no one cares enough to keep it clean.
Although some people may consider graffiti to be art, most tagging is messy and quickly done leaving walls and fences covered in a patchwork of illegible writing. Insurers may view a lack of attention to maintaining the exterior of a property as evidence that a similar lack of care is being applied to the upkeep of interior facilities or tenant safety. The result -- increased insurance premiums.
Areas that are covered in graffiti and trash encourage further vandalism and illegal dumping. The presence of graffiti doubles the number of people littering and stealing in the neighborhood. If it appears that no one is watching the area and doesn't care, you can become a target for even more people to dump trash or tag your buildings.
A video surveillance solution can help combat graffiti damage and vandalism
Strategically placed cameras around the exterior of the building, in back alleys, stairwells and gates can deter would-be vandals from tagging or dumping trash around a building. When graffiti does occur, video provides valuable information to law enforcement or insurance that may even lead to restitution. OpenEye Web Services thumbnail reports can help expedite clean-up of graffiti and trash by providing an easy way to quickly review low traffic areas that are vulnerable to vandalism.
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