Broken Windows

“Broken Windows” is a criminological theory that states that visible signs of crime, anti-social behaviour and civil disorder create an urban environment that encourages further crime and disorder. Rudy Giuliani, back when he had some credibility as Mayor of New York, implemented a policy based on the broken windows theory. He had broken windows repaired and graffiti removed nightly. As a direct result, the overall crime rate dropped sharply.

Researchers had theorised that graffiti, abandoned buildings , begging and other signs of disorder in neigbourhoods create an environment that leads people to commit more crime. In the “broken windows” theory, as it has come to be known, such characteristics convey the message that these places aren’t monitored and crime will go unpunished. There is a whole body of evidence which variously proves, and disproves the validity of the theory.

However, at Expedio we have adopted our own version of Broken Windows. Our version is simply that the better condition a building is kept in, the better the tenant will look after it. There are two angles to this. Firstly, by  improving the quality of a building, no matter how old, prior to the tenant taking possession, we have proved that the tenant (almost always) will take better care of it. Secondly, when a tenant is occupying a building, and maintenance needs doing, the sooner it is done, and to an appropriate standard, the more respect and care the tenant will have (usually) for the building. Or , to put that another way, if a building is poorly presented and poorly maintained, likely it will attract poor quality tenants, and be badly treated.

So we incorporate the Expedio version of the “Broken Windows” philosophy into our everyday property management activities as well our refurbishment of existing properties. The upfront investment in creating a quality workplace pays dividends  in the care paid to our asset – the building.