Moving, renovating, and expanding can all be stressful on a business, but we hope that with these helpful tips, we can relieve some of that stress and help you and your business thrive.
**Please note that projects don't always progress in the order outlined below. Some steps are interchangeable**
Have a Vision
Don't worry. You don't need to have every little detail figured out, or even a finalized plan. A general understanding of what you need for your business is a great place to start. Do you need more retail space? Storage space? More offices?
The best thing to do is ask yourself why you want to move to a new location or renovate or expand at your current location. The big question of "why?" helps you focus on what you truly need out of your project.
Make a Budget
Making a budget can be tricky but guess what! You don't need to know an exact dollar figure right at the start. What? YES. That is correct. Remember that vision discussed earlier? That vision is the foundation for your budget.
By having some sort of plan, whether it is a general idea or an engineer-stamped plan, you know where the focus is going to be on your new space and what the essentials are.
Contractors can provide you with a general price per square foot range to help you figure out a base price. Contractors can also help you decide on the best building materials for your project as different options can affect the cost of a project.
The biggest thing to remember about your budget is it needs to be a little flexible. Sometimes you may have second thoughts about what type finishes you would like, or sometimes, as we saw in 2020-2021, the price of building materials changes drastically. Other variables that may alter your final price may include unexpected asbestos abatement or bringing your plumbing and/or electrical up to current standards.
Have a Plan
There are many ways to obtain a plan for your project. You can look online and purchase a stamped plan, you can go directly to a draftsman with ideas or a rough sketch, or you can go through a contractor who will help you with the process of obtaining your plan.
Choose a Contractor You Can Trust
Find a company that will work with you and provide a quality product in a timely and safe manner. Construction can have a big impact on your business and your wallet, so reach out to family, friends, and business colleagues to get recommendations to help take away some of the guesswork of finding a great company. Some important factors to consider: is the construction company insured? Are they safe? Are they reliable? Visit the Construction Safety Association of Manitoba and Workers Compensation Board sites to find companies in good standing with safety compliance. A safe work site means an efficient work site.
Plan for the Interim
It's important to figure out how a project will affect your business during construction. If a new build took longer than expected, would you have a place to stay before you move? If your business is under renovation, do you have a safe area for employees to work and for customers to come in?
While most projects follow their intended timeline, delays can occur. Changes to the project, bad weather, supply shortages, and unexpected problems in existing structures can delay the start of a project or interrupt it.
Remember You are the Boss
Contractors are working for you! Feel free to ask questions before, during, and after a project. A good contractor will answer questions about methods, processes, permits, timelines, and costs. We want you to be satisfied with your project and want your feedback.