Purpose: Thie purpose of this paper is to present the critical success factors (CSFs) for engaging in the building maintenance business in Hong Kong where maintenance is a major market sector. Design/methodology/approach: In this study, CSFs are identified for the business of building maintenance based on data collected from a questionnaire survey and interviews. Findings: A total of 12 CSFs are identified, such as client's satisfaction, certification of company, reliability of service, quality of service, and company reputation, and most are related to two principal factors, namely maintenance service and organization, and project management. Originality/value: This paper provides a review of building maintenance in Hong Kong and identifies a list of success factors for the business of building maintenance. The identified CSFs and principal factors provide useful reference for maintenance contractors to have a clear understanding of the expectations of the building maintenance market in Hong Kong.