Building a Shutdown Checklist

From: Forte Consulting and Investigations

The unprecedented spread of COVID-19 and requirement for social distancing have created business challenges affecting almost every industry. Whether operations are put on hold or continue remotely, simply turning off the lights and locking the doors will not protect your business. There are important loss prevention and risk reduction measures to consider.


  • Limit building access to authorized personnel and designate person(s) that will monitor ongoing activity
  • Designate a single point of entrance for accessing building when necessary
  • Inform landlord, security company, law enforcement, fire department and neighboring businesses of shutdown
  • Create a list of all equipment that is necessary to maintain proper interior conditions

Secure building exterior:

  • Fix or reinforce any potentially vulnerable areas of entry
  • Empty dumpsters and remove any combustible materials around the building
  • Consider setting up outdoor motion-activated lighting near building entrances
  • Block off and secure all ladders and access points to roofs and upper levels
  • Ensure video surveillance equipment is working or consider installing equipment
  • Post signage indicating that the building is under video surveillance and/or stating “No Trespassing”
  • Bushes and other growth surrounding the premises should be kept under control

Ongoing activity (ideally weekly):

  • Check exterior entrances to ensure that they are in good repair and locks are working properly
  • Maintain/test video surveillance equipment, security and fire alarm systems
  • Inspected for any signs of vandalism and/or intrusions and quickly remove or repair
  • Check to make ensure all utilities are in service
  • Check all equipment previously listed as necessary to maintain proper interior conditions


Building Shutdown Checklist, SCORE Idle Facilities: Managing Impacts of COVID-19, Aon Property Risk Control
Idle and Vacant Buildings, Allianz Managing Risk in Vacant and Idle Buildings, Willis Towers Watson