So, you are wondering whether or not becoming a building superintendent is the career choice for you and you would like a little more information about what the job entails, how to become a building superintendent and most importantly, what your responsibilities will be. Below is a short introduction to the purpose, responsibilities and outlook of a building superintendent.
What does a building superintendent do?
A building superintendent is a person responsible for the maintenance and repair of a residential building. Also known as building supervisors, they are the first point of call when it concerns any issues with the building. Issues can range from repairing a leak or blockage to major repairs where the building superintendent will be responsible for hiring and supervising contractors to do the job.
Key requirements to become a building superintendent
As with any other job, a degree helps; however, in this case, it is more about the experience. You are required to attain a high school diploma, and some employers may require some post-secondary education. If you are completing a bachelor’s degree, opting for a subject such as architecture, construction, property management or financial maintenance will help.
As stated above, employers typically hire people with experience. That said, if you are being hired by a property owner you may be required to move on the site as part of your new employment. Other skills you may be asked to demonstrate are communication skills, minimal accounting skills, organizational skills and the ability to work long and out of the ordinary hours to help maintain their building.
Responsibilities of a building superintendent
The key responsibility of a building superintendent is to keep the building looking clean, safe and generally an enjoyable environment for guests. Although not necessarily by their own doing, they are expected to keep all maintenance on the building up to date and therefore, work with contractors for larger repair jobs. This is why it is key to gather the right amount of experience before jumping into this job as it requires a small amount of accounting knowledge, a level of construction or maintenance knowledge and extremely strong managerial and communication skills.
Other responsibilities can include:
•Cleaning or general housekeeping duties
•Performing minor repairs on your own such as small blockages or leaks, replacing washers on taps, etc.
•Reporting any major and minor complaints in writing (i.e. writing full reports)
•Inspecting the safety of the building (fire extinguishers, electrical, fire escapes and alarms)
•Keeping reports and regular updates for building owner
•Ensure adherence to city regulations
•Do apartment or premises inspections
•Do regular inventories
Job prospects and salary
Experience does have a moderate effect on this job as you will be chosen most likely based on your experience rather than degrees (although they are still very significant). The average salary for a building superintendent is $48,632 according to the Bureau of Labor Statistics. This salary does vary enormously according to the level of experience and the building itself; for example, the amount of responsibility that comes with the building. In addition to this, higher level building superintendent jobs do require certain qualifications such as CFM (Certified Facility Manager), which is available through the International Facility Management Association.
When looking at what is to come for building superintendents in the future, this is hard to say, although the BLS have stated that due to the fact that more people want to live in apartments, building superintendents will see a rise in employment rates of 12% between 2012 and 2022.
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