The cost of Restaurant Renovations

restaurant renovated south florida

Restaurant renovations costs vary widely from converting an old restaurant or a space used as a different type of business into a brand new beautiful, open and inviting space. Each project we work on is dramatically different based on our clients wants and needs. If the aforementioned space has been a restaurant and contains equipment that is usable such as a working kitchen that can lower costs and renovation time. Does the space need new electrical or gas? Are you starting from scratch? Don’t forget it’s all about the details even the city you’re in will impact the cost.

The Building Journal puts the national average cost for a 5,000-sq-ft restaurant with mid-level finishes at $160 a square-foot, or $480,000. Included are permits, equipment, design and build-out. The cost can jump up drastically in a city such as Miami where each square-foot is precious. What your establishment will cost is unclear until you sit down to develop a budget. Here are some elements to seriously consider when pulling together an initial budget.

  • Design Starting a restaurant is a creative endeavor, some prefer to work with their general contractor, architect or designer. Those looking to bring in a designer could pay as little as $20,000 or as much as $500,000 and beyond. The cost depends on the designer’s experience and fame or “celebrity” within their industry, whether the space requires a lot of alterations in order to implement a certain design, or how elaborate the décor will be. The designer helps with not only the look and feel of your establishment, but also the all-important layout. A restaurants layout can impact the flow of service especially during the busy moments.
  • Mechanical, Electrical, and Plumbing (MEP) This is crucial to do before renting or buying a space in case the MEP are to far gone you may want to opt for a different venue altogether. For example, a decrepit HVAC can set you back tens of thousands of dollars. Furthermore, in big bureaucratic cities like New York connecting gas can take several months.
  • Permits New or renovating an existing restaurant will include a lot of different government departments from the fire department, gas provider, building department etc. The actual permits can be lower cost items on a budget but getting those approved can add substantially to the overall renovation cost. Before you sign a lease, always check the (CO) certificate of occupancy. This dictates what the space can be used for and if it does not give permission for food and beverage changing it could be both time consuming and costly or just impossible.
  • General Construction From flooring to bathrooms weather it’s a build out or a renovation general construction will be a big chunk of your total budget. The publication Restaurant Owner did a survey of more than 700 responses and found for a medium restaurant roughly 3,200 square feet for construction alone or build-out cost an average $50 a square foot.
  • Overages through the course of renovating and remodeling things may go wrong or just simply cost more than expected. On average, the Restaurant Owner’s survey found the overages to be as high as 34% over budget.In summation, always plan out a detailed budget take into consideration all the angles and possible overages. Being well prepared and having extra money to carry your business afloat for the renovations plus the first 6 months to a year. While this may seem like a daunting task if owning your own restaurant is your dream let us at ACI of South Florida turn it into a reality.
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