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How to Manage a Budget for an Office Fit-Out

An increasing number of companies are opting for a fit-out or a refurbishment when it’s time to give the office an overhaul, rather than upping sticks and moving to a new relocation.

If your business has expanded or grown and the existing space no longer works for you, a fit-out could be the ideal opportunity to reconfigure the design and enhance productivity amongst staff.

But although it may be cheaper and more convenient, a fit-out is still a major expense and it’s essential to manage your budget carefully to ensure you stay on track. Here are a few ideas about how to ensure your office fit-out expenditure doesn’t break the bank.

How much should I expect to pay?

An office refurbishment is a big step and should be treated as such; there’s little value putting your employees and your business through the temporary inconvenience if you aren’t going to reap significant benefits as a result.

Therefore there’s no point in doing this half-heartedly. Wait until you are in the position to be able to complete an office fit-out properly, so that the new design offers radical benefits.

Getting in experts to provide advice, help and support is absolutely essential; consider it a short term expense for long term savings. The ideas they will provide could transform the way your office works, boosting output and cutting back on wasted time. Opting to try and go it alone will prove to be a false economy.

It’s important to accurately estimate the cost and timescales for your office refurbishment project

It’s important to accurately estimate the cost and timescales for your office refurbishment project

How much you want to spend obviously depends on your budget, but as a very rough rule of thumb, many businesses budget for approximately at least a year’s worth of rental costs.

Be honest about your budget

Office refurbishment specialists will work with whatever budget you have to spend, big or small. The important thing is to be completely transparent about affordability, even if you’re squeezed for cash.

Being honest will help the experts plan the most effective use of your cash, and they may be able to come up with alternatives which offer better value.

You might need to be prepared to compromise; consider your priorities in advance. Make it clear what features are absolutely essential and what it is that you’re willing to sacrifice in order to make sure your finances stay on track.

Be prepared for inconvenience

You may have originally intended for work to only be completed once everyone had left for the day, but this approach will draw out the project and could make it more expensive.

By being willing to consider radical and alternative ways of working as an interim measure, you could help your budget not only stay on track but stretch that little bit further.

Alternatives might include allowing employees to work from home, closing the business temporarily, offering staggered shifts (thereby allowing parts of the office to be closed and worked on in succession) or even renting different premises for a short period.

Be prepared for inconvenience, it will be worth it when the work is completed

Be prepared for inconvenience, it will be worth it when the work is completed

Although some of these options might involve a cost in the short term, if they slash the time it takes to complete the work, you could end up quids in.

Don’t be afraid to cut corners for the non-essential stuff

You might crave the bespoke designer drawer handles and light switches, but if your budget is being stretched, there’s no shame in choosing an off-the-shelf option instead.

Use your money wisely and on the items that will have the greatest use and the most impact. A good office design expert will be able to give you some tips about how you can make the most out of your budget without losing any of the intrinsics of the design.


The result of office fitouts can be simply fantastic, completely changing the ambience of a space, and reconfiguring working patterns. This cannot just provide a boost for staff, but could also have a very positive effect on any customers that visit the premises.