Like most build outs, each is unique to its industry and retail build outs are no exception. This, of course, means that designing an amazing retail build out will require a distinct point of view, with well-defined details and a clear-cut budget. For those in retail, opening a physical brick and mortar store in today’s diverse retail marketplace can be both challenging and exciting. So, just how do you plan for your retail location buildout, develop a budget which won’t break the bank and open your successful retail operation? Let’s get some tips on designing an amazing retail build out from the experts at Perillo Construction.
Consider the Costs
Depending on the basis for your retail business, costs range from economical to expensive, based on what you are looking for in the way of space, materials, finishes, etc. An annual survey of retail build outs estimate the average costs at around $60 per square foot which for a 5,000 square foot space comes to around $300,000. Don’t let this scare you away from your dream of opening a retail store, as this figure is based on mall stores rather than, say, a store in an up and coming neighborhood or revitalized downtown area where a smaller store with a simple buildout can often be accomplished for $15,000 or less. Once again, your build out costs ultimately depends on the overall scope of your vision and the materials and finishes you want in your space.
Designing Your Space
If you hire an architect or designer, you can anticipate the cost to be approximately 20 percent of your overall build out budget. Keep in mind, not everyone opening a retail space hires an architect or designer. Your retail project may only need new shelving, paint, and floor coverings, allowing you to use existing wiring and plumbing. Even for a simple build out, you should confirm with your locality if you permits and special licensing is required. In most cases, large or small, you will need permits. Should you want to optimize your space and plan an incredible customer experience, you may want the help of an architect or designer to achieve the experience as well as ensure technical design elements (handicapped accessibility, bathrooms, etc.) are appropriate.
Plumbing and Electrical
If the existing plumbing and electrical in the space are sufficient, using them can keep your costs down. Often in older buildings, a build out may need to include new wiring and plumbing. Should you desire specific lighting to enhance your brand, new wiring may be needed to achieve the look and style you want. You should also consider other power needs for special equipment to be used in your retail space which may require an electrical upgrade. HVAC (heating, ventilation, and air conditioning) can also be a factor in your build out unless your lease puts the responsibility for HVAC on your landlord.
For plumbing upgrades, you’ll need to determine bathroom needs, as well as break room needs for you and your employees and go from there. You’ll also need to know if local ordinances also require you to have a restroom for your customers. Once you have all the facts, a plumbing upgrade may be required for existing bathrooms or completely new restrooms in your space. Often existing bathrooms can be used as if with a fresh coat of paint and a good cleaning, at other times you may find you need a complete overhaul. A basic bathroom will cost around $6,000, but the cost could go up depending on the location of existing water and sewer access.
Flooring, Ceiling, Fixtures, and Paint
In a retail build out, flooring and ceiling changes are often only cosmetic, lowering your costs and not requiring a special permit. Fixtures and millwork may add cost to your retail buildout budget, depending on your vision and the materials, finishes, and quality of what you chose. Painting is the final step in your build out and often one of the least expensive parts of the process.