Renovate or Relocate: Evaluating Your Office Space Needs

Both office renovations and relocations are significant decisions that will impact your organization for the foreseeable future.

Exterior shot of an office building with many windows.

Post-pandemic life has brought much appreciated normalcy for businesses across the country. But what counts as “normal” today is different from before 2020, at least for those organizations who shifted to a permanent hybrid schedule. While this arrangement may yield benefits from a staff retention and work-life balance perspective, hybrid businesses may be underutilizing their office space, especially if it were designed for a team in the office five days a week.

In most cases, there are two ways to address this: renovate your existing office space or move to a different one that is better suited to handle staff that is staggered throughout the week or may only be in on certain days.

Each has its own benefits and challenges, and making the right decision for your business requires careful consideration. Here are some of the notable advantages and disadvantages of renovating versus relocating, as well as tips to help you make an informed choice for your business.

Benefits of Renovating

Renovating your existing commercial office space allows you to keep your current location and avoid broader, subsequent changes such as alerting customers, partners and vendors of the change, and even logistical details such as parking needs. An effective office renovation also allows you to tailor your workspace to better fit your needs, such as changing your layout to improve collaboration or upgrading your technology to better serve your clients. In addition, renovating can be more cost-effective than relocating, especially if your current space is in a desirable location or has lower rent prices than other properties in the market.

Challenges of Renovating

The end result of a renovation is an updated, tailored space for your organization, but getting there can prove quite tumultuous for businesses that go this route without the requisite planning and outside help. Renovating requires significant time, resources, and planning. An overly complex renovation or an ill-prepared office design company can cause a range of issues such as a disruption in workflow, delays and unexpected changes. Renovating can also be more expensive than anticipated due to unexpected issues found during construction, such as outdated wiring or plumbing systems.

Benefits of Relocating

Relocating your commercial office space can provide a fresh start and the opportunity for growth. By moving to a new location, you can take advantage of new amenities, a more desirable location, or a better fit for your company’s values and culture. Relocating can also bring new energy and excitement to your employees and help attract new talent to your business. Furthermore, relocating allows you to reassess and optimize your business processes, providing an opportunity for a new and improved workspace configuration.

Challenges of Relocating

Relocating can be a time-consuming and costly endeavor. In addition to finding a suitable location, you’ll need to coordinate the logistics of the move, including the move itself, employee relocation, and other related expenses. Furthermore, relocating can negatively affect your business operations if the move isn’t handled carefully, such as losing customers who are used to your current location or experiencing delays in productivity due to reorienting your workspace.

Tips to Make an Informed Decision

If you’re trying to decide whether to renovate or relocate your commercial office space, make sure you consider the following:

  • Conduct an analysis of your current office space and identify the core goals and objectives your organization has in the upcoming years, particularly those relating to employee collaboration and culture.
  • Consult with a commercial real estate agent or contractor to get advice on current market trends, costs, and opportunities for your business.
  • Involve your employees in the decision-making process by gathering feedback, providing transparency, and setting expectations about the impact on their work environment.
  • Develop a detailed project plan that outlines the cost, timeline, and potential risks of each option, and establish clear metrics for success.

Selecting the Right Office and Work Environment Company for Your Needs

Both office renovations and relocations have the same core goal: deliver a new space that best aligns with your team’s needs. Making sense of all the wants and needs across your company and transforming those into an actual design, with a realistic budget and schedule, is both paramount and complex. Threading this needle, so to speak, is largely dependent on the skills and expertise of the work environment firm you choose.

An experienced office design and work environment company can help you achieve a space that is inviting, supports your staff’s needs, and improves productivity. Just as important, the process through which they help you achieve this should be one rooted in collaboration and clear communication. From working with different business functions at the onset to keeping your team updated and on the same page throughout the project is critical to its success.

Take the time to fully vet those office and work environment companies you’re considering. The time invested in finding one that understands your culture, aligns with your communication needs and knows your goals will pay dividends through your new space.


Both office renovations and relocations are significant decisions that will impact your organization for the foreseeable future. Your team can have peace with its choice by taking all the proper steps like conducting a thorough analysis, involving all stakeholders, and creating a detailed project plan. With the right considerations, your office can benefit from a more efficient, collaborative, and sustainable workspace for your company.

Hilldrup and WeSolve specialize in office planning and relocation services. If your organization is need of a new space, whether that’s through renovation or relocation, we can help!