Looking for a comprehensive office move checklist? Then look no further…

Moving offices can be exciting - but it can also be a bit of a headache. Luckily, a little planning and some careful management can go a long way in minimising stress and disruption.

The ultimate office move checklist

We’ve put together this step-by-step office move checklist to help your relocation go smoothly. 

Step 1: Plan the basics

At the very beginning, make some key decisions so you have an overview of where you’re headed:

  • When does your current lease end? 
  • Does your current lease have a ‘break clause’?
  • When and how do you need to give notice?
  • When do you want to move into your new office?
  • Why are you moving? Do you need a bigger, smaller, better or more affordable office?
  • Has senior management given approval for the move?
  • What’s your overall budget?

Step 2: Appoint someone to lead the project

You may have a team of people involved in making the move happen, but you need someone to steer the ship. Choose someone who is:

  • An experienced project manager
  • Senior enough to make decisions
  • Very organised
  • Good at staying within budget
  • Knowledgeable about every part of the business
  • Great at motivating others
  • An excellent communicator

Step 3: Consider your office move needs

What do you want from your new office? At this stage, it can be a good idea to get your staff involved - let them know you’re planning a move, and talk to them about what they’d like from the new office.

Decide on your priorities:

  • How much space do you need? If you’re not sure, check out our article on finding the right sized office.
  • Do you want somewhere that’s easy for clients to visit, or convenient for you to visit clients?
  • Are you looking for a location that attracts new clients, or new talent?
  • Are public transport links important?
  • Does it need good road access or parking?
  • Do you want to be near local amenities like shops, cafes and gyms?

Step 4: Work out a budget

An office relocation can potentially be very expensive, so getting your budget right is a must. Get quotes from potential suppliers and put together a budget for the whole project, including:

  • Occupancy costs (rent, service charge, maintenance, taxes, energy etc.)
  • Transaction fees (for property agents/lawyers)
  • Contract break fees (if you’re leaving your current tenancy early)
  • Insurance
  • Environmental assessments
  • Health and safety assessment
  • Design and fit out
  • Removal costs
  • New furniture and equipment, including delivery and installation
  • IT costs - new equipment, cabling, relocation fees
  • Telecoms - new equipment and installation
  • Security costs
  • Disposal costs (of old furniture, equipment, rubbish etc.)
  • Post redirection
  • Storage fees
  • Marketing costs - website update, new stationery, announcements, invitations etc.
  • Dilapidation costs for your current space (some leases require you to restore the space to its original condition when you leave
  • Contingency (budget an extra 10-20% for unexpected costs)

Step 5: Plan the timetable

Your timetable considerations should include: 

  • When you intend to be in your new office
  • Coordinating the end of your current lease with the start of your new one
  • Liaising with suppliers to outline your requirements
  • Lead times and completion dates for every task involved in the move

Review and revise your timetable periodically throughout the project, and stay in touch with suppliers to make sure things stay on track.

Step 6: Find your space

Once you know what you’re after, it’s time to find your perfect space.

Shop around, view properties and select a shortlist. When you have an office in mind, delve into the nitty-gritty:

  • Are there any issues with the local area?
  • Will it be a realistic commute for employees?
  • Are there places to buy lunch?
  • Are there any competitors or potential partners based nearby?
  • Are the other tenants in the building high quality companies?
  • Are there any off putting smells, distracting noises or other issues?

Our user-friendly online platform allows you to search, view, sign and move in to properties from your mobile device, putting you in complete control of the process. Find out more.

Step 7: Plan your new space

Now comes the fun part - planning and designing your new space.

  • Plan out your new office space with a detailed floor plan and dimensions
  • Identify communal spaces, collaborative areas and meeting rooms in your new layout
  • Assess your current furniture and identify any new furniture you need
  • Organise any stationery and equipment you need for the new office
  • If you intend to hire new staff after the move, take new employees’ needs into account

office move checklist

Step 8: Consider sustainability

Moving to a new office is a good opportunity to make your company more environmentally friendly:

Step 9: Plan the logistics

Once your plan is in place, it’s time to start locking in the logistics:

  • Book an office removal company - go through the British Association of Removers to find a reputable firm
  • Arrange temporary storage during the move, if required
  • Take a full inventory of everything that needs to be moved, disposed of or stored.
  • Book cleaning services, both for checking out of the old office and cleaning the new space
  • Book loading bays or parking for moving day

Step 10: Assess your IT and telecoms needs

  • Inform your internet and telephone providers of your move and arrange for any updates needed
  • Assess your current IT and telecoms setup and arrange any upgrades or new equipment you need
  • Make backups of any data you’ll be taking with you
  • Make sure your IT team is prepared for the transition

Step 11: Tell everyone you’re moving

  • Notify the post office of your new address
  • Update your address wherever necessary: your website, online accounts, contracts, social media, delivery subscriptions etc.
  • Update stationery and branding material
  • Set a date for staff to update their email signatures
  • Notify customers, clients, partners, stakeholders and industry bodies of your change of address

Step 12: Get ready for the big day

  • Distribute a moving day schedule to everyone involved
  • Coordinate holidays to make sure key people are available
  • Make sure all staff know what’s happening (when to tell clients, clear desks etc.)
  • Finalise details with the removals company
  • Arrange packing materials - colour-coded labels will make things much easier

Step 13: Move out

  • Clear out any unnecessary clutter, e.g. scan files you don’t need in hard copy
  • Dispose of any sensitive information securely
  • Donate or recycle any unwanted furniture, computers or equipment
  • Arrange for all rubbish to be removed
  • Photograph the old office in case any issues come up with the movers or landlord

Step 14: Move in!

At last, all your hard work has paid off!

  • Test everything - computers, phones, networks, electrical equipment etc.
  • Take photos to validate the condition of the office when you move in
  • Make sure the project leader signs off on every part of the move
  • Distribute keys/access cards to staff

We hope our office move checklist has made the process easier. Now there’s only one thing left to do: celebrate!

Welcome to the neighbourhood