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How To Prepare Your Office For A Move | Step-By-Step Checklist by California Movers USA

Office moves can be quite daunting. There’s nothing easy about moving your team to another location. Throw in your equipment, machinery, or electronics, and the whole thing can become quite complicated.
When it comes to planning and organizing your office move, you need to make sure it runs smoothly. In addition, you want to get ahead of any potential issues to have a Plan B should you need one.
The good news is that our step-by-step office moving checklist can help make your office move more seamless . It will also ensure that every piece of equipment ends up where it should be and is not a moment too late.
Don’t delay, start to plan your office move as soon as you can. The sooner you do, the sooner everything will be dealt with, and you’ll have less to do on the day of the move.

6 Months Before Relocating Offices

Plan the Logistics

Consider your current lease. Are you expected to pay a fee if you leave your lease a little early? Do you need to deal with any broken light fittings or damaged paint? Remember that some paint may become scratched during the move. You may, therefore, need to prepare for this.

Get Moving Quotes

It’s now time for you to get a few quotes from local moving companies. But, first, consider your budget and try to find a company that works within your budget.
Compare the cost of moving from at least 3-4 companies. This will give you a general idea of how much the move may cost. Then, work with the moving company that you like the look of the most. Do they offer you everything you need? Are there any additional services that you have not yet considered?
Make sure you don’t automatically opt for the cheapest quote. This is because the mover may not offer you exactly what you’re looking for. They may be the cheapest around, but they may fail to deliver good quality customer service. Companies usually have low prices for a reason. Make sure you do your research and eliminate those companies that are too cheap.

Consider Moving Insurance

Do you need moving insurance? If you use machinery or a piece of equipment to keep your business running, you may need this type of insurance. Why not choose a coverage that is higher than the typical industry standard?
At the time of writing, this standard means you will receive approximately $0.60 per pound of equipment . In other words, if your office chair weighs 10 pounds, you will receive $6.00.
If this does not sound enough, then opt for higher insurance coverage. It may cost more, but it can ensure that you receive more compensation. Finally, get the peace of mind you need so you can move to your new office without worry.

Create a Budget

When planning an office move, creating a budget will help to prevent you from spending too much money. If you have a budget, you can also see where you can save some money. For example, you may want to hire office moving services to pack your equipment for you, but your employees could do it instead. Try not to give your employees too much to do on top of their regular work as they may find it hard to juggle everything.
When you choose to create a budget, make sure that you list everything you need to account for. Rather than simply adding ‘Removal company,’ write what services you want to pay for and how much you’re willing to pay for them. You may also want to consider altering the budget allowance for each section from time to time while working with the same overall budget.
For example, your budget may look a little like this:

  • Moving materials: $300
  • New Wi-Fi set up $400
  • Decorating the old office: $750

But you may have to make a few changes at some point so your budget could end up looking like this:

  • Moving materials: $450
  • New Wi-Fi set up $400
  • Decorating the new office: $600

Budgets can and do change over time, so it’s important to be prepared for it. Below are other things to do when making a budget.

Create or Download a Template:

If you don’t know where to start, you can create a template of what you need to pay for to facilitate your office move. If you can’t make it, download it online. There are several templates you can use as a guide.

Add Extra Services and Charges:

When shifting offices, you might need to disconnect your computers and other pieces of equipment. If your moving company cannot handle it, you might need to hire technicians.
This is an extra service and should be factored into your budget. If you have sensitive equipment that requires special transportation, your office movers may charge you for it. So, include that too.

Add Existing Office Repairs:

Repairs may already be in your relocation checklist. You should also add it to your budget. However, check your lease or rent agreement to see who handles the repairs, you or the landlord.

Marketing Costs:

You may want your customer to know you are relocating offices, so plan for marketing costs. Ensure you make an office relocation announcement ahead of time.

Early Lease Termination:

Another office moving cost to consider is early lease termination. If you are leaving before your lease expires, you may have to pay the penalty, depending on the agreement you signed.

With a workable budget, you will focus more on what’s on your moving to-do list and reduce stress. In addition, if your financial plan is realistic, moving will feel like another business venture rather than facing the unknown.

Create a Planning Team

Creating a planning team will ensure that more gets done. When planning an office move, you need to make sure you’re on top of everything. There is so much to do during and immediately after an office move. This is why you need to get on top of everything.
Do you need to involve upper management? Or can you deal with it all yourself? Who is going to help you with the whole process? Who isn’t going to be involved? Work out who will help and what they’re going to do. Ensure they know what you expect of them throughout the moving process.

6 MONTHS BEFORE RELOCATING OFFICES

3-4 Months Before the Office Move

Planning the logistics

Confirm the date of your move with the owner of the current lease and the owner of the new lease. Now is the time to call the moving company you’ve chosen to confirm the date. Also, verify any other arrangements that need to be confirmed as soon as possible. This will help ensure you’re organized on the day of the move.

Communicating With Your Team

Now it’s time to communicate with your team and develop a moving plan. Make an office moving checklist, and be sure to include the involved people . You need to know what they’re doing and when they’re doing it. This will keep everyone on the same track.
Add important things such as internet installation to the checklist and any deadlines. Make sure you assign specific jobs to every team member to know what they should do. The next job is to give a few leaders to coordinate the move.
Tell each of your employees about the move so they know what to expect and what they have to do.

Communicating With Your Suppliers

Tell your suppliers, your affiliates, and any partners that you’re going to move. Let them know if your business relocation will affect them. If it does, make sure you give them all of the new contact details.

Order Your Specialized Equipment

If you plan to upgrade or replace your company’s equipment, you should order it now. Some items may take months to reach your new office. So call as soon as you can ensure that it arrives on time.

Deal With Office Furniture

Now it’s time for you to deal with any piece of office furniture or equipment that needs to be moved carefully. Will you need help disassembling the parts or moving any hazardous materials?

Decorating Your New Office

You may want to consider decorating your new office or at least making some plans to. Will the office need painting? Does it need a new carpet? Think about any changes that need to be made. Now is the time to organize things.

2 Months Before the Office Moving Day

Come Up With a Floor Plan

It’s now time to map out your present office and the new one. This is so you can work out where all of your furniture and equipment will be. Make sure that you consider where power sockets and internet connections are. If you do this now, you may not have to move everything around at a later date.

Internet and Telephone Installation

You probably need to set up your internet and telephone installation around two months before you move. Try to find a company that is happy to set the facility up for you. Most moving companies can help you to do this.
You should also plan to set up your IT systems and PCs. But, again, make sure your IT staff can do this themselves or need help.

Auditing Keys and Access Cards

Create a list of everyone’s keys, passes, and access cards. You will need to collect all of these cards before the moving day.

Your Special Services

You now need to discontinue hiring any security, landscaping, or cleaning services that you hire. Let them know when you’re moving so they can stop providing the service once you’ve left.

Consider:

  • Looking at business insurance. If you cannot transfer your insurance policy to the new office, it’s time to research a new insurance provider.
  • Buying new furniture and other office equipment now. First, you need to ensure there is good quality furniture in your new office. Then, if you think you may be expanding the workforce, you will need to buy new tables, chairs, and other equipment.
  • Off-site storage. This will be ideal if you don’t have enough room for all of your non-essential equipment just yet. You may have the chance to rent a storage unit in a nearby location. Use this location until you know where you’re going to place everything.

1 Month Before You Move Office

Start an Inventory

It’s now time for you to start an inventory. First, make sure you tag all of your office supplies, equipment, and furniture. This will help to ensure that you avoid losing anything. Next, it would make sense to take photographs of everything to have a catalog of all of your equipment and furniture. This will help you make a claim should you need to.

Transfer Your Utilities

Contact your utility supplier and let them know when you no longer need their services at the office. If they can supply your new office, it will save a lot of work. However, if they cannot, you will need to search for a new supplier.

Collect Your Moving Supplies

Ensure that everyone has enough cardboard boxes, labels and pens, and packing tape. Chances are you’ll need more than you think, so make sure you buy plenty of everything.

Organize your Change of Address List

You need to inform all of your contacts that your office is about to relocate. Send mail or an email letting them know your new address and how they can reach you. You may have to send a reminder letter or email if they forget.
You will also need to let the following people/entities know you’re moving:

  • Accounts receivable
  • Accounts payable
  • Business accounts
  • Company websites
  • Financial institutions
  • Listings on review sites such as Yelp and Google
  • Magazine subscriptions
  • Newspaper subscriptions
  • Social media accounts

Consider:

  • Getting passes or parking permits for the new office. Before you start working at your new office, you may need to get your employees’ new passes or tickets.
  • Arranging for a cleaning company to clean your office once you’ve moved out. Some full-service moving companies offer you this.

2 Weeks Before Moving Office

Finalize your Plans

Hand out your moving itinerary (if you have one) for the week or days that lead up to your move. This is especially important if you need to pack up and move one part of the office while another part goes about business as usual.

Order Access Cards and Keys

Order keys and access cards now so they will be ready when you move into your new office. Make sure that everyone who needs a key or access card has one.

Confirm Installation of Your Phone and Internet

Have you hired a company to set up your phone and internet connection for you? If you haven’t you, need to do this now. This is to allow you can get on with work once you’ve moved into your new office.

Confirm IT Services and Computer Setup

If your employees can set these services up, great. Make sure you know who will be doing this, and they know what they need to do and when. If no one on your team can set the services up, hire some people who can.

Reduce Your Office Inventory

If you have any broken furniture or furniture that is looking outdated, try to get rid of it. Some goodwill charities will take and refurbish the items.

Backup Your Data

Backup all of your data and your files. If anything is damaged or refuses to reboot, you have everything saved. Make sure you keep all those important documents too.

1 Week Before Relocating Office

Inspect Your New Office

If you can get in your office, do a brief inspection. This will ensure you can deal with lights that refuse to work, areas that need painting, or anything else that may crop up. The sooner you deal with any issues, the easier your move will be.

Look at Your Schedule for Your Moving Day

Take another look at what time the moving company arrives and confirm the employee who liase with them. Be sure that you know what will be ready to move on the day. Who is going to be there during the move? Who will lock up once the movers have left?

Pack Your Belongings

If you and any of your employees have some personal belongings at work, make sure they pack them. They should do this before the day of the move. Let them know they are responsible for these items.
If you supply your employees with all equipment, ensure the movers deal with them. Alternatively, the IT department could deal with them.

Consider:

  • Getting more packing materials. It is time to order more if you think you may not have enough of them.
  • Ordering moving blankets, safeguards, or surface protectors. This will help to avoid dents, paint chips, and broken lights that are likely to occur. Some moving companies supply their blankets.
  • Getting all your mail forwarded. This will ensure you don’t miss anything important. Also, tell the US Postal Service about your new address once you’ve moved.

1 Day Before Your Office Move

Finish All Your Packing and Labeling

If you have any equipment that needs to be specially handled or packed, mention this to the person or people who are responsible for this.

Collect Security Cards, Passes, and Keys

Refer to the inventory list and make sure you collect all parking passes, security cards, and keys. You will also need to make sure they are deactivated before you dispose of them.

On the Day of the Move

Check that the utilities are working properly. Do the lights come on? Is there water running through the faucets? If something isn’t right, contact the utility companies. You cannot have a fully functional office if something isn’t right.

Get Your Office Set Up

Use the office plan or outline so you can arrange all of your furniture, machinery, and equipment. If you plan to hire a moving company, this is where all of that planning will pay off. You’re probably aware by now that office relocation planning isn’t always easy. However, having a plan can make this stage so much easier.

Plugin the IT Systems, Internet, and telephone

Do all this with your local provider to completely connect your office.

Walk Through Your Empty Office

Walk through your empty office and make a note of any damages. Not only will you need to report any harm, but this walk through will also help you spot anything that has been missed during the move.

After the Move

Consider:

  • Testing your Wi-Fi, IT systems, computers, and phones. Make sure that you test every piece of essential technology so you can get your business up and running once more. Troubleshoot any issues you come across.
  • Confirming your old lease’s termination. You may want to check this twice just to be sure. You will also need to ensure that all your business partners and clients are aware of the move. You should also verify that your new address is displayed accurately everywhere.
  • Getting your employees to unpack. Make sure they remove any tags or labels from furniture and equipment. Some professional movers can do this for you. However, the more help you have, the sooner you can get your business working as per usual again.
1 DAY BEFORE YOUR OFFICE MOVE

What Is the Cost of Moving an Office?

The size of the space you were in determines how much you will spend. Below is a breakdown of packing and moving services fees for different office sizes.

  • A 1,500 square foot space costs between $750 to $4,500 depending on the materials moved.
  • A 3,000 square foot office averages between $1,500 to $9,000 if there are large files and furniture.
  • A 10,000 square foot office costs between $5,000 to $30,000 if the business has numerous employees and workstations.

Other factors that affect the office moving costs are:

  • Number of trucks
  • Number of employees
  • Furniture requiring dismantling and reassembling
  • The size and weight of furniture
  • Amount of artwork to remove and reinstall
  • The distance (short distance moves cost more than long distances)
  • Number of packing materials used
  • The time frame for the move

Your professional office movers will consider all these factors before giving you a quote.

WHAT IS THE COST OF MOVING AN OFFICE?

When Is the Best Time for Office Moving?

Whether it’s office or apartment moving, the time you choose to move is crucial. Summer is the busiest time for relocating, but also the best period. However, the season is not the most important thing to consider when making an office moving plan.
The most crucial time is when relocating will not affect your business operations. So, if your company’s peak period is during the summer, moving at that time would be a bad idea. The day of the week is also essential.
For instance, if your business thrives during the weekends, planning a move at that time would be counterproductive. Therefore, pick a time that will not affect your business . You don’t want customers to arrive to your location and not find you there. Finally, planning a move during a non-peak period helps you spend less.

How Long Does It Take to Organize Moving an Office?

Before you start preparations for moving an office, you should have a timeline in mind. Will it take you 12 months? Or will it take a shorter time? Keep in mind that your office moving timelines start before the six-month checklist and extend beyond the day after the move.
Typically, moving into a new office takes at least 12 months. There are several things to consider before moving and a lot more to do after doing so. Here is a few things the 12 months timelines contain:

Negotiations With Landlords and Solicitors:

If you’re renting an office space, you need to find a place and negotiate terms with your new landlord and their solicitors. This might take about three to six months.

Designing the New Office:

You can’t just move office after settling with the landlord. You need to design the space to meet your business’s standards. This might take one to three months.

Carrying Out Renovations:

Another thing likely to take time is renovating the new office space. For example, you might break down walls or install new fixtures. Depending on how big the space is, this might take one to four months.

Others:

The remaining timelines go into hiring a moving company, preparing the office moving notice, moving, and unpacking. The latter could take up to one month depending on your business size and the time you dedicate to it.

To Conclude

We hope this office moving guide will help you make that move. Start by working on your budget and ensure everyone knows what they’re doing. Then, if you think you need professional help, hire a moving company as soon as possible .
Map out your nice new office as soon as possible and get new keys made for you and your employees. You may want to consider ordering a few more keys than you need. All of this needs to be dealt with before the week when your move will happen. The more you have done and dusted, the more efficient your relocation.
No matter how organized you might be, there are always a few surprises, unexpected issues, and forgotten things. However, if you organize everything to the best of your ability, all of these surprises, unforeseen problems, and forgotten items will be so much easier to deal with.
Don’t forget that most moving companies offer packing and unpacking services. Some will even help you plan your relocation and get rid of the items you will not need at your new place. This means you will have less to do than you imagined.
Start preparing for your office move as soon as you can . While you may think you have plenty of time in reality, the time will go quicker than you hoped. So don’t delay; start planning today!

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