Commercial Tenant Improvement Construction, Creative Space, Los Angeles

“Creative Space” construction has been the common theme for new tenant improvement build outs here in the Los Angeles area. With an influx of tech companies coming to LA, along with a wave of young entrepreneurs flooding the market, the next generation is paving the way of design and office feel.

In the last 10 years we have remodeled many outdated offices and converted them into “Creative Spaces” with polished concreteglass wall officesopen ceiling conceptvibrant wall colors, fire sprinkler pipes, columns, and soffits. An extra feature to enhance these creatives spaces have included adding ping pong tables, gaming systems, TV’s and even Virtual Reality systems in some work places.

Modern Office

Although we love building Creative Spaces, it isn’t always as easy and smooth, or less expensive as most people would think . In fact, it’s about 40% more expensive, and depending on which type of finishes the client has chosen, it may take longer to complete, adding about 30% more time compared to a “Building Standard” build out.

The reason for this longer process is due to the term “Creative”. As a Contractor you need to get creative in your scheduling and in your plan of attack. When planned and scheduled correctly, and you make sure your subcontractors are highly monitored, it can create a fun and smooth process.

Pro’s & Cons’s of building a “Creative Space”

Pros’s 

  1. Space looks amazing!
  2. Floors are easy to clean.
  3. Easier Maintenance.
  4. All pipes, conduits, VAV boxes etc above ceiling are easily accessible.
  5. Bragging rights that you have a creative space
  6. Office space may get nominated for an award or be placed in a magazine.
  7. Employees will love coming to work

Con’s 

  1. Approx 40-60% more expensive compared to a normal “Building Standard” build out.
  2. Noise travels and almost impossible to omit the echo and sound travel.
  3. Not good for conference room, especially if doing video conferencing.
  4. Tenants below may complain about the sound

In the end, it all lies in the eye of the beholder. Some companies truly believe this cool new “creative space” and feel makes all the difference in how their employees carry themselves- the vibe can enhance work flow, etc and can be vital to a successful new age work feel/flow.

Other’s however believe that it’s way too expensive to spend for construction per $SF cost. They would prefer to use that money to invest, build, hire etc. Or they may fall into the category of professionals who require more privacy, for example- therapists, lawyers, or doctors – who may need more privacy, walls to deck, insulation, wood doors for privacy and sound, carpet, drywall or t bar ceilings etc.

At the end of the day, we here at DGR Construction Company Inc. are happy and grateful to be able to serve you in your construction needs. We are well versed in all aspects of the commercial construction space.

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Metal stud Framing and Drywall Bids, Los Angeles CA.

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1.Measure the Square Footage

Measure the total square footage of the area where the drywall will be installed. When drywall is going to be installed in walls, multiply the width times the height of each wall or ceiling where drywall will be installed. Prepare a spreadsheet identifying all walls or ceiling sections and add all the quantities.

2. Estimate Drywall Boards

Calculate how many drywall boards you will need. After all areas have been totaled, divide those areas by 32, if a 4 by 8 board will be used, or 48 if a 4 by 12 , depending on the size of drywall that is going to be installed. This division will get you the numbers of boards required to be installed. If you want to get the cost, just multiply the total amount of boards required by the price of each drywall sheet. Remember to add local taxes and delivery charges.

3.  Metal Stud Framing

* Roughly $1.50 – $2.50 per sq ft LABOR only, varies do to workforce wages
* MATERIALS range from $0.40 – $0.50 per sq ft depending on geographic location, quantity ordered, fluctuating steel costs, and fasteners.
* $2.50 – $3.00 per square foot LABOR and MATERIALS.
* 40% – 50% Profit Margin, Before Taxes and Overhead.
* Calculations reflect 3 5/8″ Steel Studs, 20 Gauge, &
16″ Spacing for Common Non Bearing Walls.

* Example : Commercial Fit-Out : Interior Walls – 200′ Lineal Feet – 10′ foot High
* Materials : 50 Track Runners – 180 Studs – 220 Track Fasteners – 800 Screws
* Labor : 4 Man Experienced Crew – 10 Hours Construction and Clean Up
* 1 Foreman – $40 Hr Rate – Project Planning, Lay-Out, Set Elevations, & Details
* 1 Mechanic – $25 Hr Rate – Track-Out, Level & Plum Walls, & Rough Openings
* 2 Helpers – $15 Hr Rate – Stud-Out, Cut Materials, Square Studs & Screw-Off

* Contract : 2,000 Square Feet Commercial Framing @ $2.50 per sq ft = $5,000
* Labor : $40 + $25 + $15 + $15 = $95 Dollars x 10 Hours = $950
* Materials : Track = $200 + Studs = $600 + Fasteners & Screws = $150= $950
* Total Earnings = $5000 – Total Costs = $1,900 = $3,100 Gross
* 62% Profit Margin – Excluding Taxes, Insurance, & Overhead
* $3,100 Gross Earning – 28% Income Tax = $868 = $2,232 Net

Danny Ramirez
Construction Superintendent, Project Manager,Consultant. 
dan@dgrconstructionco.com