When it comes to the renovation of commercial premises, you might hear the terms “fitout” and “refurbishment” used pretty much interchangeably.

To anyone inexperienced in construction jargon, it can be difficult to tell them apart, but they are two different processes, and we’ve decided to break them down for you in this blog.
If you’re beginning a project soon, then this will hopefully make it easier to clarify your plans in your own mind and communicate them to your chosen contractor.

What’s a fitout?

A fitout begins with an empty space that will be transformed into commercial premises. There are different types of fitouts at each stage of the work. These are shell and core, CAT A and CAT B fitouts.

Shell and Core is the first stage of a fitout. It involves installing basic structures to make the building usable. This could include entrance lobbies, lift structures, frames, water mains and other utilities.

CAT A fitout involves finishing the building’s internal structures, so it would include aspects such as partition walls, WCs, air-con and other basic facilities. CAT A is the stage of work that turns the building into a blank canvas, ready to be used, but without design features or decoration.

CAT B fitout is the final stage of fitout works. This is where the space is adapted to the specific use of the tenant or owner, involving aesthetic interior design. Features such as furnishings, colour schemes, branding and special finishes would be included at this stage.

What’s a refurbishment?

A refurbishment is a process that takes place in a space that has already been occupied and used. It involves repurposing or altering the environment to new or changing needs, whether there is an existing tenant or a new occupier.

A refurbishment may involve changes in the layout and use of the space. The works could include redecorating to freshen and reinvigorate the premises, to attract more customers, help in recruitment, improve kerb appeal and update the image of a commercial operation.

A new occupant or a business undergoing a rebrand may require a complete change of interior design, features, furnishings and colour schemes.

Refurbishment can be a highly involved and detailed process, depending on the budget and required outcomes. However, any commercial premises can benefit from even small changes and updates, so regular refreshing of your interiors is a worthwhile investment even with a small budget.

Need more information?

If you’d like to discuss a project with experts that can cut through the jargon and deliver your vision for your commercial premises, contact us today.

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