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Building an Office From the Ground Up: 5 Things to Think About

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The decision to build your own office space is one that should not be taken lightly. This sort of venture requires a great deal of planning, with plenty of pitfalls to avoid and research to focus on.

That’s not to say you shouldn’t do it, of course. There are several benefits to building a new office rather than purchasing an existing building.

For one, it can be far more cost-effective – the average capital value of a commercial property is between £250 to £350 per square foot in the UK, and a lot of this space can easily be wasted. It can also ensure a better return on investment and can be designed specifically with your business in mind.

But there are several things you need to think about before starting. We’re going to explore X of them below, covering finance, hiring, surveying, and the setbacks you might face.

Working Through Your Finances

The first thing you need to think about before embarking on a commercial build is your finances. One of the biggest problems that can stop a construction project in its tracks is an ill-thought-out budget.

You need to gather all the information available regarding the project, what the initial costs will be – including designers, contractors, materials, and more – as well as the projected profit of your business. You should also know early on what the bank will lend you and sort through a full timeline of the project – including eventualities that may not even happen.

Putting Sustainability First

We mentioned before that building a commercial property can give you a good return on investment, but this will only be the case if you prioritise a forward-thinking approach. Around the UK, sustainability and eco-friendly construction projects are becoming more commonplace, and this is something you will need to replicate if you want to increase the project’s value.

Cost efficiency also has a part to play here. Rather than choose traditional materials, you should choose materials that are more sustainable, simple, and ultimately more cost-effective – these retaining wall systems from Modular Cubed are a good example of this, but there are many more materials and construction techniques to research fully.

Hiring the Right People

You also need to be working with people who will champion sustainability, cost-efficiency, and modern methods in the same way that you do.

This means hiring a good designer who can kick things off with a structurally sound blueprint, meeting all the codes of commercial construction while meeting your own requirements at the same time. It also means finding a commercial contractor that is properly licensed and insured, with a portfolio that matches what you are trying to achieve.

Planning For Setbacks

As mentioned before, there are plenty of eventualities that might set your project back, and while you cannot plan for these eventualities specifically – if you knew what setback would hit your project, you could make sure it never happens in the first place! – you can create a contingency plan.

For instance, you can plan for the weather not being in your favour. You can plan for key materials not being delivered, or items being on the backorder. You can plan for breakages and mistakes, and you can plan if an employee becomes ill. Through both finances and strategy, you should plan for a number of things that may not even happen, just to make sure the project doesn’t fall off the rails.

Time and Presence

Lastly, the making-or-breaking of this project does not just come down to the budget or planning, it comes down to presence. You will need to make sure that you have the time to be present for the project and push for regular contact with your contractor. If you do this, you will guarantee quality workmanship and excellent communication – both of which are key to big construction projects like this.

If you are not there to make sure everyone remains on task – and are doing things the way you want them to be done – then the project can easily go south, and the months of planning and budgeting would have been for nothing. The biggest thing this commercial build needs is your time, so make sure you give it just that!


Photo by Uneebo Office Design on Unsplash

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