“Shopfitting” is the construction and finishing of commercial spaces, such as retail shops, department stores, offices and restaurants. This can include the building of display units, counters, shelving and supplying the necessary fixtures and equipment a business needs to operate. For example, typical shop fittings for a restaurant would include stoves and refrigeration and a beauty shop would need chairs and mirrors.
As you may know, or can imagine, shopfitting can often be an expensive proposition, and the cost for the full fit-out project of a business establishment can vary greatly. Because this can be such an expensive undertaking, here are 10 tips to cut costs in shop fitting:
1) Hiring the right project manager to oversee the process from start to finish is critical, as a good PM will be able to both interpret the customer’s needs as well as drive the construction process effectively and efficiently.
2) Furniture is a major component a fit-out, typically making up about 40 percent of the total cost. While the idea of having a single contractor provide everything may be tempting, contractors typically add a 30-percent markup to the cost of furnishings. Therefore, the most cost-effective approach is to purchase furniture items separately.
3) While it may be tempting to go for all-new materials, the cold-hard truth is that route can be very expensive. A study from the UK found that recycling used components can cut fit-out costs by over 60 percent from buy new materials.
4) Picking the right type of building can save a lot of money. As an example, ceilings are one of the main expenses in a fitout, accounting for over 20 percent of the cost. Even more significant, electrical installation can be as much as 25 percent of the total cost!
5) Don’t erect walls. An open-plan interior design will require fewer walls and doors, and therefore likely cost a lot less. A recent office-design trend is shifting away from cellular-style layouts to more open floor-plan designs. This is obviously a lot less costly initially and can also save on future operating costs.
6) If you must have walls, selecting a building with a layout close to what you need will help reduce costs.
7) You can save approximately one-third the total fitout cost by “adaptive reuse.” This simply means making the most of what you may already have, such as repurposing any current workstations. This will clearly cost you far less than buying new. Additionally, you will save the costs of having to dismantle and dispose of any currently-owned furniture.
8) Avoid those “unforeseen” hidden costs by ensuring your project quotes include everything.
9) Some property owners lease office space that is already partially or completely finished. While this may sound like a good idea on the surface, there is always a cost. Be sure to compare apples with apples when considering options.
10) Fluctuating foreign-exchange rates can sometimes be a major challenge when it comes to shop fittings. It is the wise entrepreneur who takes fluctuating foreign-exchange rates into account before embarking a major project if much of the material being used is sourced from overseas.