How To Budget For Your Office Fitout

Part of the: Office Fitout Collection

We know all too well that a new office fitout can be an expensive venture, and it’s these costs that cause many businesses to avoid making the change they need in the first place.

However, moving offices and implementing a brand-new fitout is often the change many businesses need to work and do business better.

There are many ways you can go about cutting costs so that the office fitout you envision can fit into your tight budget. Here are a few ways to help you keep the costs down.

Plan Ahead

The most important piece of advice we can give you is to plan ahead for any office fitout. No matter how large or small you intend your fitout to be, it always pays to get everything in order ahead of time. This makes it much easier to manage your costs and ensure expenses don’t get out of control.

When planning ahead, remember to make the landlord aware of your fitout plans to ensure you have the approval required to go ahead with your upgrades.

Speak to your preferred fitout company about their quieter periods and the price might be reflected accordingly.  Alternatively, if you want your fitout finished before Christmas or end of the Financial Year (the two busiest periods in the building industry), be sure to get in early and start the planning consultations with the fitout team and lock in your project before others do and you miss out.

Choose the Right Building

It always helps if you can choose a new building that already has a large chunk of the fitout work done for you. The less work that needs to be done to the building, the more cost-effective it will be for you. Look at things like the layout, flooring, doors and any existing bathroom and kitchen facilities. If they’re in good nick and they suit your vision for the perfect office, you’ll significantly cut costs straight off the bat.

Get Help from Office Fitout Specialists

Too many people head down the DIY path thinking it’s the cheapest and most cost-effective way to pursue an office fitout, but this couldn’t be further from the truth.

If you have no experience managing a fitout project, you probably don’t realise that mistakes can and will be made, and that those mistakes can cost you dearly.

Office fitout projects can also drag out for longer than you’ve expected and planned for. With this in mind, it’s not hard to see how a fitout budget could easily blow out.

The best way to avoid a DIY disaster is to go with an experienced fitout company like ours. We know our stuff when it comes to fitouts and we can take care of the whole project for you from start to finish, ensuring it’s on time and on budget. Having a single point of contact for all things fitout related will also make everything much easier to stay on top of.

If you have decided to opt for a fitout project manager, make sure you engage these services early in the planning process. Professional fitout specialists will be able to identify design errors early and prevent lengthy delays.

And remember most fitout companies have built up long standing relationships with sub-contractors. Because these companies provide such a high amount of work to them throughout the year, they keep their rates competitive rather than contracting direct to one client as a ‘one off’.  

Reuse & Adapt

It may be tempting to buy all new everything to include in your new office. But in reality, there really is no need to purchase completely new office furniture when transferring to a new building. Bring your existing office desks, chairs, and other furniture pieces with you instead.

Reusing isn’t just an option for office furniture, either. You could even go so far as to reuse bathroom materials and ceiling tiles to bring those costs down even further. Alternatively, you could also sell old fittings on Gumtree or to a second-hand dealer who buys used equipment. By doing this, not only do you bring down costs, but you also help the environment by reducing waste.

Open Plan Office

Going ahead with an open plan office is a great cost-effective option because you don’t need to worry about the added expense of erecting walls between rooms. If your office space requires a bit more privacy, consider partitions, privacy screens and work pods instead which are far more affordable and can easily be moved around when required.

Cut Corners in the Right Places

If necessary, there are some things you can go without and still end up with a professional-looking office as a result. It’s just a matter of knowing which corners to cut to get the balance right. Perhaps you don’t need to lay carpet throughout the entire office, or you may prefer to opt for more affordable fixtures sourced from local suppliers.

Consider your interior design decisions and see if any elements could be making your fitout more expensive than it should be. You may be able to substitute more expensive products with a cheaper alternative.

Also, try not to be too specific in your design. If you’re opting for non-standard sizing or fittings in a particular colour, you will have to pay for the additional expense.

However, be careful not to cut too many corners that might cause more cost and headache than originally worth. For instance, planning ahead for future growth and running any power or data to these locations during the fitout stage is much more cost-effective than doing it after the walls have been put up and painted.

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Brian McGrath

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