Remodeling a shop is an exciting time for business owners. However, as you excitedly prepare to renovate your shop, it’s imperative to consider all the research needed to guarantee a successful remodel. Read on for a guideline of everything business owners should consider before following through with a renovation.
1. Review Your Certificate of Occupancy
Business owners that are making major changes to their properties have to review the certificate of occupancy for their property. This document will determine what the property can be used for legally. While a small renovation to your shop won’t violate the CO, if business owners are preparing for an extreme transformation, they need to ensure their changes are in accordance with what the CO specifies.
For example, a business owner that signed a lease for a property designated to be a private residence, they can’t remodel their home to be a pastry shop if the CO prohibits it. Do your research by looking online for a copy of your property’s CO. Most cities have these documents available through online government databases.
In addition to checking the CO before making any major renovations, this document also dictates other smaller-scale renovations. If a shop wants to use part of their property for something other than what it was initially designed for, say transforming their backyard into a patio, the certificate needs to explicitly dictate that this is allowable. In the event that the certificate doesn’t allow for certain changes, business owners will need to update the CO.
2. Review the Plumbing, Electrical, and Mechanical Integrity of Your Property
Another step to take before going through with your renovation is to assess the current condition of your property. Will your space be able to handle the changes you have in mind? If a simple paint job is all you have in mind, your property’s current setup should be perfectly fine. However, with more extensive transformations, business owners need to have a professional assess the status of their building’s plumbing, electrical, gas, and the like. A shop owner hoping to completely change the type of business they have will likely need to update their setup to be up to code and to guarantee that the new business design will operate as safely and efficiently as possible.
3. Consider Your Building’s Envelope
The envelope for your building is essentially the area that separates the outside of your shop from the inside. This may be the roof, doors, or windows. While you may already have plans involving your building’s envelope for your renovation, be sure to assess whether or not the plans will violate any laws.
The Americans with Disability Act is one that many business owners must consider when renovating their shops. The ADA requires business owners to make sure their buildings are accessible to anyone with disabilities. This means ensuring your building is wheelchair accessible, has ramps as well as steps, and anything else that would otherwise allow someone with disabilities to easily enter their business.
4. Choose the Professionals You Will Need
After doing the necessary research to ensure your plans won’t violate your lease, certificate of occupancy, the ADA, or any other laws, it’s time to consider what you want your store to look like and what type of professionals you need to make that happen. Choosing the right experts can make or break your remodeling efforts.
Will your renovations require an architect, lighting expert, or contractor? Do you need the best office fitouts Gold Coast has to offer to take your business to the next level? While you may have a clear vision in mind for what you want your remodeled shop to look like, you need the right team to make it happen. Once you have an idea of the professionals you need to complete your remodel, start searching for them. Ask colleagues for referrals and look online for well-reviewed experts. The stronger your team, the better your remodeling experience will be.
5. Review Financing Options
Once you’ve reviewed the estimates from your team of experts, you need to consider all your various options for financing your renovation. While shop owners can finance their renovations out of pocket, this isn’t an option for some store owners. After calculating the estimated budget for your renovation, add on 15% for a more accurate amount.
One of the best options for financing a business renovation is with a 3 – 5 year loan. As you review all your loan options, find one with a reasonable enough interest rate. Business owners with a credit score of 680 or more and a healthy credit history of no bank liens, foreclosures, or bankruptcies, these businesses can consider applying for a bank SBA guaranteed loan.
These loans can be used to finance leasehold improvements and needn’t be collateralized if the loan is under $25,000. However, keep in mind that this kind of loan often carries a higher interest rate.
6. Determine How Your Remodel Affects Your Business
While the benefits of a remodel may be obvious to you, it is important to see how they affect your business. Do the costs outweigh the benefits? Will the changes you make to your shop pay for themselves? While it’s difficult to determine this without going through the renovation process, this is an important part of preparing for a remodel.
Consider where customers spend the most money in your shop and what they value most about your business. Will your remodeling attempts take this into account? The right renovation will increase sales, just be sure to properly research whether or not customers will indeed take advantage of the new additions.
According to statistics, small independent shops will see a 43% increase in sales from new customers a year after their remodeling. Even if your remodeling efforts don’t result in an immediate return on your investment, as long as they will ultimately improve your business and enhance your customer’s experience, the renovation will be worth it.
Business owners interested in remodeling their stores have a lot to consider before, during, and after the renovation process. Be sure to keep this guide in mind when considering remodeling your shop. Just as remodeling won’t happen overnight, business owners will eventually see success from their well researched and properly executed renovations.