Now that much of the country is getting back to in-person work after the COVID-19 pandemic, a growing number of companies are looking to make changes to their office spaces. Some companies have chosen to update their spaces, and others have decided that a full renovation is in order.
But there are new challenges in place for the commercial construction and renovation sector that could impact these plans. So far this year, we’ve seen volatile pricing for materials, an uncertain labor market, and inefficiencies in the supply chain. As just one example, the Bureau of Labor Statistics reports that lumber prices rose 114% from May 2020 to May 2021.
Not sure how to handle these supply shortages if you have office renovation projects on your to-do list? Here are five tips to help you get them done:
1. Assemble Your Team Early
Time is money. So, when your bottom line is in jeopardy due to rising costs, it’s important to hit the ground running with any new projects. Get your contractor, engineer, and architect on the same page as early as possible. If you can make any smart design choices to save on materials or labor, now is the time to make those decisions.
2. Expand Materials Options
Instead of relying on what you’ve always done, consider some other options for your materials. What can you substitute that might be more affordable and available but just as effective? Again, this is where you’ll want to work with your design and building team to weigh your options.
3. Build Lean
Waste can also be costly when it comes to a construction or renovation project. Lean construction, which focuses on reducing waste and being more efficient, can help increase your ROI by reducing those materials shortages. When you’re paying over 100% more for lumber, it would be a good idea to keep as much of it as possible out of the local landfill.
4. Get Your Materials Early
Businesses that plan generally save more than those that fly by the seat of their pants. Since materials prices are pretty volatile, take advantage of the dips. When there are cost savings available, jump on them quickly. Just make sure you are weighing any cost savings against the cost of storing the materials until you need them.
5. Create a Strategic Budget
Avoid building a budget that is set in stone for a project in this environment. If you do, it will probably lead to frustration and missed goals. At a minimum, put some contingencies in your budget to account for volatile materials and labor prices. As market conditions change, you can gradually adjust your budget so that it more realistically reflects the true cost of your project.
Get the Office Renovation Help You Need in Charleston
Supply shortage or not, you need a partner you can trust if you have office renovation plans. Carolina Services Inc. (CSI) has been specializing in comprehensive construction management solutions since 1976. We offer commercial construction, space planning, commercial repair and maintenance, and tenant up-fits to clients throughout the Charleston area.
Contact us today to learn more about our services.