Consider a multi-step, phased redesign, rather than tackling the entire property at once. A phased plan provides flexibility in cash flow and financing and greater variety in lease agreements, which can reduce financial risk to the owner or developer.
“If you have only so many dollars to spend, look for the biggest bang for the buck,” says McCafferty. “Do your core spaces and bathrooms with nice finishes—that speaks to all tastes.”
In one case where Hixson converted a distribution center into a corporate office building and R&D center, the client had a clear vision of what to do first. “They did the cafeteria early because everyone was going to use it,” recalls Mirrielees. “That’s a typical corporate scenario.”
For leased space, Hudson recommends against prepping the space for a single tenant or even for a single type of tenant. Instead, set those funds aside for future improvements.