Construction Tips to consider before leasing

Construction Tips to consider before leasing

What’s not in your lease pertaining to construction?

Let’s assume your business is growing and making headway in your industry. You’ve found the space you like and have a lease in front of you, ready to sign. At this point, you’ll want to review the lease with a legal professional, but you can use this post and our previous post, “Construction Tips to Consider Before Leasing – What’s in Your Lease?” to begin to ask some questions and analyze the feasibility of the space.

This article deals with several factors that can have an impact on the buildout of a new space.

 What’s Not in Your Lease? 

  1. Conceptual Design & Space Planning

Having a vision on how to implement your unique brand personality while considering the layout of the space (meeting rooms, offices, traffic flow in kitchens and dining rooms) for team members, guests, and clients goes a long way in easing the design.

The initial questions to ask are:

  • Can I incorporate some of the existing elements into the space?
  • What are your must-haves and wish-list items?

Always ask for a layout of the proposed area to be leased. This way you can test fit the concepts and features you want to incorporate. Committing to any lease without test fitting can lead to costly issues down the road if your must-have features don’t fit.

  1. Building Permit Drawings

Any new construction or renovation to space requires a building permit and an approvals process to ensure that all areas meet the Ontario Building Code and bylaws of the municipality. Some of the key compliances are fire rating between units, sprinkler modifications, fire alarms, the path of travel, entry/egress, emergency lighting, and washroom occupancy.

A variety of disciplines have to come together to ensure a safe workspace every day, as well as in the event of an emergency. Not all contractors provide permit drawings, however, having them incorporate this into their proposal gives greater clarity on responsibility.

  1. Interior Design

Hiring an Interior Designer or design-build contractor to create your firm’s unique brand personality is an important step to ensure that this vision is brought forward through the final product. While following all necessary municipal building codes, the designer is not only able to find the necessary products (lighting, flooring, etc.), but they will maximize the use of the space to suit your specific needs.

  1. Construction Budget

Construction will likely be the biggest cost to be incurred when occupying new premises. Establishing your budget prior to signing a lease should the top priority. This will factor into all decisions made – from the size of the space to be leased, to the look and feel of the products to be used.

While the goal is always to get all the tenant’s must-haves, our design-build process ensures we check off as many of the wish-list items as possible.

Keeping in mind our previous article “Construction Tips to Consider before leasing – What’s in Your Lease?” – the Tenant Improvement Allowance can help extend the budget if it can be negotiated into the lease.

  1. Construction Schedule

While there is always a desire to compress the construction timelines, there are numerous factors to consider.

With the significant cost involved in any construction project, establishing quality control measures with the correct products is imperative to ensure it lasts. But in today’s market, the lead time of products will play a significant role in determining the schedule. You can learn more by listening to our #thoughtsthatbuild vlog on the issues and possible solutions to this.

While these items and those in our previous article can seem intimidating, here at One Oak, we act as a project concierge, guiding our clients through design, engineering, permitting, and construction.