Stay On Your Office Fitout Budget with 5 Easy Ways

How do you see your dream office fitout to be? Big, spacious conference rooms and a well-stocked pantry? Perhaps an open floor layout with recreational spaces for your employees to destress? What about huge windows allowing natural light to come in? The list can go on and on, but then reality hits with your budget. Do not scratch your vision just yet! You can achieve those office fit out dreams of yours with a well-thought budget, ample research and the aid of this article! 

What is an office fitout?

Before diving into the numbers, let us understand what exactly is a fitout and why would you need a well-thought out budget for it. Basically, an office fitout is the process of transforming your space into one that is occupiable for you and your employees. Office or commercial fitouts can range from having a complete blank canvas that needs ample planning to get it to a space of your liking to a fully fitted, well-equipped office space. 

What is included in a fitout?

There are three types of fitouts: Shell and Core, Category A (Cat A) and Category B (Cat B). Depending on the type of fitout you opt for, each of them would include different things. To make things easier, here is a summary for each fitout: 

  • Shell and Core

As its name suggests, the Shell and Core fitout is just the shell and core of a space or building. While it may seem empty, it gives you the chance to transform it into a space you and your company would enjoy. It includes:

  • Structure 
  • Sectioned out communal areas. E.g reception(s), lifts, lobbies, loading bays and more
  • For some, a main mechanical plant to connect to 

  • Cat A

This is a step above from a Shell and Core fitout. Not entirely empty nor fully fitted, a Cat A fitout has basic mechanical and electrical installations while also giving you the liberty to hire professional help to further transform the space. It includes:

  • Suspended ceilings 
  • Suspended lighting 
  • Raised floors 
  • Air conditioning 
  • Fire detection and protection systems 

  • Cat B

Now, we take another step above a Cat A fitout and you will get a Cat B fitout. This is your fully fitted and equipped office space as tailored by the tenant or landlord. It includes:

  • Corporate identity 
  • Partitions 
  • Floor finishes 
  • Meeting and conference rooms 
  • Professional lighting 
  • Office furniture 
  • Staff facilities 
  • Recreational spaces 
  • Workstations 

What is the difference between fitout and refurbishment?

The main difference between a fitout and refurbishment is that a fitout is a process carried out on a new office space whereas refurbishment refers to changing or redesigning an existing office space. Refurbishment could include new furniture, flooring or a complete brand aesthetic that is reflected in your space. 

What are fitout costs?

Fitout costs are in relation to the cost to your landlord when performing the necessary fitout work for your new space. It varies according to the fitout you have chosen or provided by your landlord. For example, the fitout costs for a Shell and Core fitout will most likely be higher than of a Cat A fitout due to the amount of amenities needed to be added and possibly the help of a professional. 

How much does it cost to set up an office space?

Now that you have a better idea on the type of fitouts, let us look at the cost to set up your office space. As mentioned, the cost to set up an office fitout varies accordingly. Let’s break them down: 

  • Basic

Essentially, what is included in a basic office set up would be low specification of floor finishes, basic staff amenities such as the pantry, basic air conditioning and ventilation, power plugs to all desks and basic office furniture which are usually locally procured.

The average cost of a basic office fitout could range about $600 to $800 per square metre in Perth. 

  • Mid-Range

A mid-range office fitout looks at the quality, durability and functionality of your space. It can refer to office furniture, ceiling or floor finishes, bigger meeting and conference facilities, better ventilation, improvements to electrical wiring and many others.

The average cost of a mid-range office fitout could range about $850 to $1,200 per square metre in Perth. 

  • High-End

With high-end office fitouts, everything is of top quality. From the furniture down to its joints to the partitions and staff amenities, high-end office fitouts usually mean an entire transformation to your space.

The average cost of a mid-range office fitout begins around $2,000 per square metre in Perth. 

5 ways to keep your office fitout on a budget

For many of us, when we talk or even think about budget, we automatically feel the need to sacrifice creative and aesthetic ideas. Having a good and tight budget for an office fitout does not necessarily mean having a boring, mundane office. What if we say you can achieve all that and more with these 5 simple office fitout budget tips? 

  • Pick the right office fitout or site

One of the best ways to stay on budget or reduce your costs would be to find a space or site that needs the least changes. For example, if you have over 20 employees, you would need a space that has a conference or meeting room that can accommodate such a large number of people at a time.

Remember, although some properties or spaces look promising and appealing from a glance, make sure to dig deeper on the functional aspects of your space. The last thing you would want is to incur extra costs due to unforeseen or underlying issues.   

  • Communicate with your landlord

Before going ahead with planning, be sure to negotiate and lock down on the terms and conditions clearly with your landlord and establish a good relationship with one another. When doing so, both parties can clear up any potential issues that may arise in the future.

Additionally, do include an office fitout plan into your lease if you have one. This is to safeguard yourself against any objections from the other party once you have signed the lease. 

  • Plan ahead

Whether you intend your office fitout to be large, medium or small, it is always best to plan ahead of time to ensure no surprise expenses can come through. It would be easier to manage your budget and expectations when the time comes.

While doing so, include your landlord into your planning to ensure the necessary approval before going ahead with the changes. Once that has been settled, you are now able to get quotes and consultation from your preferred fitout company to find the best one that fits into your set budget. 

  • Reuse what is available

The quote, “New is always best”, does not apply to everything. Sustainability has become the new norm and that can be adapted into your space as well. While it is tempting to have new furniture and amenities, it is not a must. By bringing back existing furniture that is still functional, this will save you tons on your budget. You can now allocate the extra budget onto something else for the office.

  • Hire a fitout specialist

You might be wondering how hiring a fitout specialist reduces or keeps your office fitout budget within your means. Well, hiring a fitout specialist will actually save you from making fitout mistakes that may result in bigger costs in the future. Having a specialist on your side can help you save more than you expect. They would have the expertise in planning according to your timeline, making the right cost-effective decision while your space’s value and it just saves you a lot of time and energy.

Who can help you with your office budget needs?

We know how it gets when it comes to numbers. Paired together with the fitout planning and choices you would have to make, it can get frustrating. Here at Office Fitout Professionals, we have a fully equipped team ready to help you with your office budgeting needs. Contact us today and we can get you one step closer to your dream office space.