5 Things to Consider When Building Office Space
Choosing the correct type of office space for your business is not an easy decision. Maybe you are looking to expand your current office size, or perhaps you are deciding to build from the ground-up. Regardless of your situation, there are many factors to consider; such as costs, location, and the possible need for expansion in the future. For project managers these decisions may not be stressful, but if you are inexperienced in construction, or are starting a business on your own- the process can be daunting.
There are 5 things to carefully consider when building office space:
Location, location, location- the area in which your business is located can make or break your success. But there are other factors to consider when choosing a location, such as site restrictions for construction. Even if you are expanding an existing facility, you will still need to consider the following items:
- Property-line setbacks – The piece of land in which you are planning to build will typically have a property-line setback; meaning that there must be a certain distance between the building and the property-line.
- Location of Utilities – Water, sewer, and power are available in almost any region; however it is important to anticipate the costs to run extensions of these services to where your building will be located. Be aware that costs can add up in more remote locations. It is important to plan ahead, in order for your utility needs to be met.
- Distance from existing structures – Fire safety requirements, accessibility needs, and pedestrian exposure to inclement weather conditions are all factors that should be accounted for when considering the distance between your new building and existing structure. Corridors, connectors, and canopies can be installed to address weather concerns. Firewalls, fire suppression systems, and other code-compliant-fire-prevention measures can take care of meeting fire-safety requirements. Decks, ramps, and sidewalks are used to address accessibility concerns.
- Parking – After the building is constructed, will there be adequate space for parking? A properly-sized parking lot is important to consider when planning to build, as well as a functional layout and efficiency.
- Storm Water Management – Land Development & Site Plan – A plan review is needed to evaluate and determine if current-storm-water-management is sufficient to handle excessive run-off water from storms. By adding a building, this may exceed the impervious-surface area that the current retention basins and drainage systems are designed to handle. Flooding and water pollution are the main concerns of storm water management.
- Soil compaction – Soil compaction must be tested before the start of a construction process in order to determine the appropriate building foundation design. Typically 3,000 PSF is required, although special foundations can be designed where sites do not meet this compaction.
- Accessibility for installation – Is there an ease of access in the location that you are building? Trucks, cranes, and a variety of other machinery will need to be able to access the property. Considerations for height, width, and length all need to be checked to ensure that an alternative access plan is not needed.
- Slope of Property – If the ground is not level, excavation will likely be required before building can begin. This is often not a large concern, but it will increase costs on your building project. Unsuitable soils and underground obstructions should also be considered when excavation is needed.
How soon do you need your new facility to be up and running? Do you have 12 months to spare, or 3 months? Time is an important factor in deciding to build, and traditional stick-built construction can be a lengthy process.
You should consider the season in which you are building as well, because inclement weather may adversely affect the construction schedule and put a hold on your project. The modular building process is known to cut construction time up to 50% faster than traditional methods. This assembly-line process is not only fast, it also cuts down on pollution. Modular is a faster, greener, and a safer alternative.
There is, of course, the concern of money. Do you have the resources to afford to build? How much are you willing to spend? With stick-built construction, prices can be high, especially in areas where prevailing wage rates are required. Furthermore, project management, insurance, and security are all costs that continue to build the longer a project runs.
The short construction schedule of modular buildings really helps keep these costs to a minimum, and having the buildings constructed off-site eliminates the prevailing wage costs on the building. Another benefit of modular construction is that the individual modules are built within a manufacturing facility which allows for bulk purchasing and reduced material-waste, helping to control costs. If you want to keep down your upfront cash outlay, consider leasing a modular building.
Leasing vs Purchasing
Is it worth it to lease? Well, it is important to consider your current position. How long will you need your facility? Is it temporary or long-term? Are you okay with the obligation that comes with ownership? When purchasing a building, unexpected hassles may arise and can be costly to fix. If you decide instead to lease a building, many of these concerns are mitigated. Throughout the term of a lease, wear and tear items are typically taken care of by the leasing company, leaving you with less money out of pocket and peace of mind.
“Where do you see yourself in 5 years?” is a common question that most people have answered at least once in their lifetime. The same goes for your business too. Do you anticipate growth within your company? Will you need to expand or hire more employees? Is there a chance that you will need to add additional space? If so, modular construction is ideal because the modules can be easily added to an existing building in a timely and efficient manner. All too often businesses will purchase or build a facility, and then find that within a few years they need to move to a new location that accommodates their growth.
When planning to build, you must consider all angles of the project. There will be factors that affect your price, schedule, and process. If you are planning to build or expand your business, one of the first things you will want to consider is to determine whether you need a temporary or permanent modular building.
Do not face your project alone! Our team of experts can help you identify the angles you need to consider and provide solutions for handling challenges along the way. For more information on modular construction Request A Quote or call 1-877-438-8627