A Checklist for Planning Your Perfect Tenant Fit-Out

Tenant fit-outs involve lots of planning and moving parts, and without a strong approach to planning it’s easy to lose track of your timeline and budget. You can decrease the potential for delayed occupancy and spiraling costs by paying close attention to your planning phase. Here’s a checklist to help you get started.

Know your goal

Start with your end in mind and make your design choices and other decisions through the lens of your ultimate goal. If your goal is swift occupancy, you may be all right with choosing more minimal design elements. On the other hand, if your goal is to create a unique space that will provide your customers with a one-of-a-kind experience, you may opt to spend a little more time and money on custom features. Whatever your needs, carefully evaluate and clearly state them up front so that you can have a realistic understanding of what will be involved.


Know your non-negotiables

Every project will have its variables. Know in advance what the features are that you absolutely require, and which would be OK to change or substitute if needed. A lot of times, this list will coincide with your “need vs. want” list, or your “must have vs. nice to have” list. The important thing is to know what really matters to you in advance, and to communicate the information clearly to all parties. This will help you avoid the wasted time and money—not to mention the frustration—of miscommunication or of having to make major, unexpected changes mid-course.


Know your budget

In a previous article we talked about ways to use your budget wisely, with the number one tip being to know your budget going in and communicate your budget clearly to all parties involved in your fit-out. Knowing what you have to work with will help shape your design decisions, as well as provide a transparency in your relationship with your contractor.


Know your contractor

The contractor you choose for your tenant fit-out can have a major impact on your budget and eventual ROI—and not just because of the price they charge. Working with an experienced contractor can save you time and money, so it’s important that you carefully vet the companies you’re considering working with. Look for length of experience, track record of on-time and on-budget projects, reputation, and up to date licensing and insurance. Beyond that, aim for a contractor whose approach is grounded in value engineering—you’ll find that they will be able to build value into every phase of your project, from site selection and lease negotiation to the actual construction.


A.F. Alber’s 30+ years of experience and specialization in value engineering gives us the expertise to help you plan your perfect tenant fit-out. Contact us today to talk about your goals and how we can work together to achieve them!