Budgeting for a Major Office Fit Out Project
While costs for office fit outs in the UK can vary wildly, according to the scope of work involved, the design, supply and installation teams you are working with, and the quality of the fixtures, fittings and materials used, there are a number of factors that every company should consider when calculating a budget for such a project. In this article, we are going to take a look at the most important of these factors and how each one may affect the overall cost of your fit out. We believe it is important to understand how to budget for major refurbishment and renovation work, to avoid any unpleasant surprises owing to unrealistic expectations.
Factors to Consider When Calculating Your Fit Out Budget
The following factors will all come into play when you are costing a new project and should be considered carefully, preferably with the help of an experienced fit out specialist.
Structural or Cosmetic – The first thing to consider is whether the work required to accomplish the aims of your renovation project is going to be largely cosmetic in nature or involve structural elements as well. If, for example, you are planning to erect new walls to change the layout of the building you occupy or rebuild complete sections of your premises because they have fallen into a state of disrepair, the total cost of your fit out will be considerably higher than if it were a simple cosmetic upgrade that involved the painting of walls, installation of new furniture, and perhaps new partitions, suspended ceilings, and lighting fixtures.
- Size – The size of the affected area will play a major part in deciding the overall cost of the refurb project. Although it is not a strictly linear relationship, the interior renovation of larger buildings inevitably costs more than that of smaller commercial premises. This is especially so if you are specifying high quality materials for new flooring and other elements of the fit out. If the building in question is divided into many smaller areas, rather than one open plan space, you can expect costs to be higher too.
- Design – The complexity of your new interior design will have to be factored into the overall cost as well. If you are planning to make big changes, involving the repurposing of many areas, the team you hire to create the interior design will need more time to consider the implications of your requirements and to create detailed plans that take account of them all. Experienced commercial interior designers will obviously command a higher fee than their less capable competitors but by avoiding unnecessary mistakes and delays through careful planning, they will more than earn this fee in the long run.
- Skilled Labour – A reputable commercial fit out specialist will employ highly skilled electricians, builders, joiners, carpenters and other trades people. Such skilled labour comes at a cost but again, this cost should be more than justified by the money they can save your company in terms of avoided delays and costly mistakes.
- ICT Infrastructure – If your proposed fit out involves the installation of new telecoms and IT networks, this will add to the total cost of your project. How much it will add will of course depend on the extent of the work involved and the quality of the equipment that you specify. What we can tell you is that it is rarely a good idea to economise on costs in this particular area of office fit outs. Any company in the 21st century that wishes to remain competitive will need an efficient, reliable, high quality ICT infrastructure.
- Building Services – These include everything you need to make your newly renovated premises a comfortable environment in which to work. You need to consider the lighting you will require in each area, the HVAC systems that will be required to keep each part of your offices at a comfortable temperature throughout the year, and the electrical circuits to power these and any other systems in your premises. You should consider not just the cost of the equipment itself but the cost of installing it as well. The more complex the installation process, the more costly it will be.
- Workplace Regulations – It is incumbent upon every company, and the fit out team they hire, to ensure that the interiors of the buildings being renovated comply fully with all relevant health and safety regulations. If there are any special requirements imposed by the industry in which your company operates, these will of course need to be taken into account when costing for health and safety compliance. A full audit should be carried out both before and after the fit out, to ensure that nothing is left to chance, and these audits will need to be included in your budget too.
Added to the above costs will be the fee charged by your office fit out management team. In the event that you choose to work with Saracen Interiors, you can expect a fee that reflects our expertise but that will be highly competitive when compared to our industry peers. We can also guarantee that the money you spend to avail yourselves of our in-depth knowledge and experience, not to mention our highly skilled design and installation teams, will be more than worth it, owing to the first-class results that you can look forward to.