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Free Office Design

How Much Will That Cost?

Medical Office DesignIf you invested several hours of your time with a free-dental-office-design-service-provider and later discovered that the plan did not meet building code- or your needs- was it “free”? Doubtful! Unfortunately, this scenario is common and it’s an experience to which we are all too familiar; having “inherited” many of these projects.

Let’s put things in perspective. How much revenue would those same hours have generated in chair-time- doing what you do best? The fact is that the fee for professional design services is a fraction of what you are capable of producing in an equivalent time frame; and it comes with a guaranteed dividend of increased profitability.

O.K.! You perceive “revenue” as a dirty word. So, take income out of the picture. It’s well known that dentistry is a stressful occupation. As a result, a four-day-work-week is pretty much the norm. In kind, office planning can be equally stressful; particularly when a viable design solution is not immediately forthcoming. So, have you sacrificed your much-needed time to re-energize, and instead assumed the responsibilities of design coordinator and project manager? Whether or not you have the knowledge and skills to assume those tasks, is it worth the stress?

What about expense? Have you purchased a property or signed a lease for your new office? Are your plans are bogged-down in a legal and functional abyss? For every month that you make a lease or mortgage payment in the absence of a completed space, it is draining your resources. For the record, most lenders will include design services and other soft-costs related to your project loan. But they aren’t likely to subsidize idle property or unwarranted expenses that result from poor project management. Assuming that you are expanding or relocating in an effort to grow financially, as well as professionally it would be wise to consider that for every day that the new facility is not generating revenue, you are depleting your personal assets. If the renovation also creates downtime, you must consider that as a loss in revenue, as well. Reduced or ceased production can be extremely costly.

Let’s put that in a simple mathematical perspective. Make a list of any and all expenses and losses that were not anticipated. Divide that number by the square-footage of the new facility. Then add that number to the proposed cost-per-square-foot for development. The result will be your actual cost to construct your new office. Is that free service still “free”?

Disregard cost for a moment. Is timing an issue for you? For example, is your current lease about to expire? How would a project delay impact that obligation? Worst-case scenario, you could be evicted before your new facility is ready for occupancy. Realistically, the eviction process does take time. So, actual displacement is rare. However, you may be responsible for additional expenses that are defined in your lease and to which you are legally obligated. At the very least, a landlord can make your last days miserable, and you could incur substantial legal fees in the process. You have to ask yourself if it is worth the risk of potential embarrassment, legal expenses and the creation of an adversarial relationship?

If those thoughts aren’t compelling, there’s one last thing to ponder. Are you willing to forfeit or displace your “me time” to plan your future with someone who lacks the expertise to manage your project and assure your success? Can you place a value on a relaxing dinner with your spouse, witnessing your daughter’s goal in her soccer match or hear your son’s impeccable performance during his piano recital? Those experiences can’t be postponed or replaced. Time is a precious luxury.

Now, having read this article, you have invested your valuable time. We thank you for that and hope that you found value in the content. Now, please take a deep breath, and call us for a consultation. The breath and the first hour of our consultation are actually free. The rest comes with a modest fee, but a guarantee of great benefit.