Curtain walls are increasingly becoming an option smaller businesses are seriously considering when refitting or improving their exterior. In this post we explore four vital questions you’ll need to carefully consider when embarking on securing a curtain wall for your business premises.
Is a curtain wall suitable for my premises?
It’s important to consider whether a curtain wall will be appropriate for the building in which you conduct your business. The first thing to check is size. Although curtain walls can be suitable for a wide range of buildings of all sizes and natures, they are reserved for properties with substantial floor space and height. The second thing you’ll need to think about is the age and composition of your building. Curtain walls can’t have any structural significance, and older buildings sometimes have planning restrictions and orders placed upon them to prevent owners from modifying them considerably. As a curtain wall envelopes the entire building you’ll only be able to build one if all companies residing there agree, or if you are the owner. Otherwise you’ll need to check the terms of your lease or tenancy agreement if you are renting long-term.
How much will a curtain wall cost?
Curtain wall costs vary based on the materials used, design, labour and size of your premises. You’ll need to budget accordingly, remembering that specialist design, architect involvement and planning permission can also add to the overall cost.
Curtain walls do however often save their owners money in the long term. As they are energy efficient they significantly cut down on a company’s bills and carbon footprint – and lightweight, easily sourced sustainable materials can also be cost-effective.
Do I need permission to build a curtain wall and modify my premises?
As above, you will need to take a look at the deeds for your property before making any concrete decisions about altering its exterior appearance. If you are on a long-term lease there will be things you are permitted to change – and some things you are not allowed to touch. Preservation orders and planning permission can also halt or even veto curtain wall installation depending on the size of your building and desired design. It’s best to box this off and speak to your landlord, solicitor and local authority to save disappointment or unnecessary costs further down the line.
Will a curtain wall enhance my business from a customer perspective?
A curtain wall is a considerable investment – but it can also greatly benefit your business with significant returns experienced by companies who overhaul their external appearance in this way. What you need to think about is the type of image your business currently projects, and how it could be improved. For instance if your company is ultra-modern and forward thinking, your tired exterior with flaking paint and wooden-framed windows probably doesn’t communicate that effectively. On the other hand if you’re a rustic antiques dealer a curtain wall created from glass and aluminum could confuse your customer base. Balancing design with requirement is all part of the expert service we offer at SRL – so if you’re struggling why not get in touch today?
To consult with experts regarding the design and installation of your commercial exterior or shop front contact us today.