Ask a professional moving company to come in before you sign the new lease. You may choose to meet with other experts as well, both at your current location and in the new facility. Doing so will help you calculate the cost of the move with the total expenses so there are no surprises later. The following will give you an idea of some hidden costs associated with a business move. There are also some hints we have learned from experience (sometimes the hard way!) which we feel you might find helpful.
Moving Furniture/EquipmentIs there special concrete work or electrical installation required to move your equipment?
Consider having an expert move any special equipment you may have. Many businesses do not entrust the same company that is moving their furniture, simply because their equipment is far too valuable to their day-to-day operations to put at risk.
Ask your mover(s) for references and a certificate of insurance.
Computers, Telephone and Security SystemsAgain, keep in mind that this will add to the cost of your move. Get an estimate in advance.
Check with the phone company to see if you can keep your phone number. If not, arrange for the forwarding service to the new number.
Consider relocating the phone system over the weekend. It may cost more, but your telephone service will not be disrupted during the work week.
If your phone system is more than five years old, this might be a good time to leave the old system behind and upgrade to a new one. The money you spend moving the old system could be used to purchase something more modern.
If your space is being custom-built to accommodate your needs, be sure your electrician or telephone technician wires and installs the receptacle boxes in each office during the framing process. This saves labor cost and the end result is a neater appearance.
If there are existing computer receptacles and wiring, have your computer expert verify that they are the proper type for your network.
Review your lease. Does it require the landlord to have access through your security system to your space? If so, be sure and establish a special code for the landlord only so you can monitor any after-hour access.
Think about installing a battery backup remote dialer for the security system, should the phone lines ever be cut.
Preparing Your EmployeesGive employees plenty of notice so they have a chance to move their things. Will they have time to do so during working hours?
Review the floor plan of the new space with your employees. Show them where they will be seated in the new office layout. Take them on a tour of the new facility in advance if possible. It will make them more familiar with their new surroundings and make them feel included. Ask for their input.
If employees have not visited the new space, make sure they have printed directions so they can find it easily the first day.
Do your employees have the necessary keys, alarm codes, parking or building entry cards, ID badges, or anything else they may need on the first day to get into the building or office?
OtherDon't forget to order new business cards and stationery with the new address and telephone number(s).
Remember to send a notice to all your clients that you have relocated. You may also want to print small reminder decals to put on correspondence after the move. Often mail is sent to the old address for months after you have relocated.
Contact the post office to forward your mail to the new business location. Ask them how long they will continue this service.
Call the utility companies and schedule final readings on your last day in the old space. Set up the new service at the same time, saving yourself another phone call later.
Have the entry locks to the new space been re-keyed before your arrival? If there is a master key for the entire space, you may want to consider changing to keys with limited access to suit your needs.
©2005 The Polivka Group, LLC • Counselors in Real Estate (708)485-0616. These tips are provided as a courtesy to our clients and are for informational purposes only. The Polivka Group intends this page to be helpful, but cannot guarantee its accuracy. Leasing tips for businesses. Author: Andy Polivka.