I have found that old adage, “You get what you pay for” is true more often than not. For this reason, when I hear a commercial office space needs renovation and the competing bid is several thousands of dollars less than expected, I get nervous.
Over ten years ago, I had the pleasure of renovating a home to convert it into an insurance office. The renovation included all aspects of commercial office space design including space layout, installation of flooring including tile and carpet, paint and decor. We strategically pre-arranged all the furniture and accessories for the project to ensure great workflow, before anything began. The project took about two weeks and the results were fantastic. The remodel was smooth and really ideal in every way.
The client was very pleased and contacted me again in 2014 as she was expanding and building a second commercial office space in north Denver. This time, the project was a full remodel. I was to turn a former liquor store into an insurance office space. My contractor and I came out, drew up plans for the space and created a timeline, budget and full concept of the scope of work to be included. It laid out all the amenities she wanted and needed to make the store into a comfortable and usable commercial office space for herself and another staff.
We submitted our bid, and were told we were more expensive than she thought and that she wanted to get another bid. This is part of the industry, but just like in other industries, bids can vary significantly as they don’t compare apples to apples. Some commercial office space bids may exclude certain items so they can come in lower; sometimes they use a different quality or gain profit from other ways on the projects. (see my blog on pricing to see how I price projects here)
The client ended up going with a bid that was nearly $10,000 less expensive, which was pretty significant, and I knew she would likely have problems. Sadly, I was right and about two months later, I received a frantic call. The contractor who had promised all these great ideas had not come through.
When I saw the commercial office space, I can say I certainly wouldn’t want clients to come there. My contractor and I proceeded to complete the work based on the original design we had submitted. We were able to stay within the budget while correcting the numerous mistakes from the first contractor. Although we stayed in our budget, the client had already paid the first contractor, and I encouraged her to get reimbursed from him for all the work promised but not performed.
She was able to get a substantial amount of money back due to his poor quality of work. She apologized to us and was extremely thankful we were able to give her the commercial office space design she wanted. She had her Grand Opening on time and was excited to have potential clients, business associates and friends celebrate the expansion of her business.
Broxton Design was happy to be able to save a commercial client from a disastrous situation, but we would rather help avoid it to begin with.