Office relocations are often one big logistical nightmare. Not only do you have to consider the cost of moving the entire office, but you also have to work things out with the accounting firm, the bank, cleaning agencies, service and utility providers and if your office is a rental, the landlord. Even if you meticulously plan ahead of time, unforeseen expenses are bound to happen one way or the other and can quickly deplete your entire budget. Let’s go over some ideas on how to relocate your office without breaking the bank.
Go over the budget with the higher-ups
Despite all the consideration and careful planning, you might experience some unexpected costs during the move. This is why it’s important to set up a proper relocation budget with Senior Management which includes some additional funds to cover any unforeseen expenses. Although controlling the expenditures can be particularly challenging when you have to move in a hurry, try to stick to the plan as closely as you can, avoid going over the budget at all costs and keep a detailed list of all expenses, including the unforeseen ones.
Find out which is cheaper, DIY or a professional service
You might be thinking that hiring a professional moving company to relocate your office is surely going to be more expensive than moving everything by yourself. But you’d be surprised how many people have thought exactly the same, only to have their minds and pockets blown away by U-Haul and rental truck fees. Professional services might sound expensive at first, but have in mind that most of them are open for negotiation. Additionally, they often have massive discount during the off-season and bear the responsibility in case anything happens to your stuff during the move itself.
Talk with your coworkers about additional help
Moving companies are by no means cheap, especially when you consider that most of them charge boxing and moving separately. This wouldn’t be a problem for a large business, but smaller and mid-sized companies rarely have the available resources as their larger counterparts. Talk to your colleagues and company employees if they could help cut down the expenses by packing and moving their own things. With everyone responsible for their own stuff, the chances of losing something during the move drop significantly and there’s a lot less confusion once they start unpacking.
Avoid buying cardboard boxes
Boxes are a vital part of moving and some relocation companies charge ridiculous amounts of money for what most of us consider to be nothing more than a couple of sheets of bent cardboard. You can buy them in large quantities and hope for a discount, but you would just be wasting your money. There are numerous ways to get boxes for free including checking the Free section on Craigslist, asking in your local liquor store or simply by checking the alleys behind large and mid-sized stores.
Even if you do end up buying them, there’s always the option of reselling them to companies such as Box Cycle or Container Exchanger. If you don’t have the time and energy to deal with all the empty boxes after the move, then you might want to rent moving boxes. Although most people haven’t heard about this, yet there are companies that will deliver boxes to your old location and pick them up once you’ve settled on the new one. The last option is to go through some of the removalist companies and find the one that uses its own boxes for transportation.
Be careful when canceling services and utilities
Unfortunately, not every service provider is willing to prorate your bills according to your moving date. If the billing cycle does not coincide with the date set for relocation, you can always cancel the services a little bit earlier, in order to avoid paying for an additional month. Just be careful, as most service providers will hold you liable if you break your contract and demand you pay a cancellation fee. This is why careful planning is important, as it allows you to plan around expenses like these and avoid any unpleasant situations with your service providers.
Don’t forget about commercial property costs
Commercial property costs can be rather high, whether you own the office space or you’re renting it out. Ending your lease early can lead to cancellation fees and even result in you not being able to reclaim the security deposit. Owning office space is even worse, as you have to deal with finding a good real estate agent, advertising your vacant property and run any necessary repairs. Again, all of this can easily be avoided with some consideration and forward-planning. Let your landlords know in advance about your move. This will give them the chance to find new tenants and avoid losing rent money.
These are just some of the factors you need to consider when relocating your office on a budget. Have in mind that budget organization and cost-control represent an integral part of relocating the office, especially for small and medium-sized business. Granted, expenses can quickly spiral out of control when you have to move the entire office urgently, but if you know about the move months in advance, then you should definitely be able to keep the expenses to a minimum by sticking to your plan.