Ideal things To Do Before Engaging A Shopfitter
Beginning work with a shopfitter requires a large amount of prior planning and thought. It ends up costing everyone precious time, money, and wasted energy when a project hasnt been planned properly and lacks vision and direction. Before meeting with your shopfitting service you should take the time to check the following:
You may already have an established business and are simply looking to upgrade its appearance and adjust it’s layout, in which case location may not apply. However if your business is new or moving to a new location, it’s important to have thoroughly researched the area. What kind of potential customers pass by the shopfront? is there a decent amount of foot traffic and idle shoppers wandering past?
You should already be in negotiation with the properties management about your lease. How long will your lease last for? Are the costs and terms crystal clear? Is there an opportunity to renegotiate the term should your needs change? Your commercial space is a real business transaction and if possible you should be seeking the advice of a professional while you negotiate.
You should have a thorough understanding of what your business needs to have done before contacting a shopfitter. Whilst a shopfitter will work closely with you to understand what you need and provide their expert opinion, it will be difficult for them to help if you yourself arent sure what needs to be done. Is it a simple renovation or a total rebranding? Do you have a specific time frame and budget to do this in? An experienced shopfitter will help set realistic goals and expectations that suit your needs and wont leave you stranded over budget.
Of course, its unlikely that you will be 100% prepared and confident on what must be done, so it’s important to analyse your plan and identify any weak points. Dont be afraid to ask for advice!
Again, thoroughly understand your budget as this can be a common pitfall in a shopfitting project. It’s important that you lock down your exact needs when negotiating and to get these requirements agreed on in writing, and most importantly, refrain from making changes once the project is underway!
Don’t forget to set aside extra money to prepare for any unforseen circumstances that may occur during your build. In fact, even the most well-planned budget can still run over so it’s best to set aside a buffer of 10-15% as a preventative measure.
Permits and Legal
By now you should also be in contact with your local council, preparing applications and submitting plans. If your business involves food preparation, do you have the appropriate food business licenses and understand whats involved in acquiring one? You should also have drafted a floor plan and submitted that too.
The location you are leasing should be in top condition. Are the walls, floors and ceilings all clean and repaired? What about the electrical and plumbing? Is the equipment, such as fire sprinklers and air conditioning well-serviced and functioning? Be aware that you may be stung with extra costs if the builder finds issues that aren’t covered in your lease. You might be required to pay for their repair yourself.
Proper planning and preparation is absolutely crucial before hiring a shopfitter to upgrade your store. Nobody, neither yourself or the shopfitter, likes to be delayed because of poor planning and lack of direction. Your shopfitting service is there to help you so dont be afraid to ask for advice, thats why theyre the experts!