An Office Clearance involves detailed planning and meticulous project management. This office clearance guide contains a few helpful tips and guidance on how to go about effectively clearing your office space.

Which items do you want to keep?

Before you begin an Office Clearance operation, you must first determine what needs to be cleared. Ideally, the only objects remaining on the premises before you hire an Office Clearance Expert will be those you want disposed of. If not, you should take the time to figure out exactly what you’ll be bringing with you and what you wish to get rid of or are leaving behind. Without this, it will be extremely difficult for the office clearance company to predict the time of the clearance or for you to get competitive quotations from other contractors.

When is the deadline for your office clearance?

Set a target date and work backwards from that. To begin, set aside some time at the end as a contingency in case the clearance project takes longer than expected. The larger the scale of the clearance, the bigger the buffer period required. Then there’s the time required for physical clearance of the premises. Naturally, this will vary depending on the size of the property and the number of items that need to be cleared – however, assuming you do not have any tight external deadlines, a general guideline would be to estimate how many loads they think will be required and then allow one day for every three Luton van loads (about six builders skips) of garbage cleared.

At least a week should be allowed for contractors to provide quotations and determine when in their operational calendar they will be able to allocate appropriate resources to complete the clearance professionally and effectively. Seeking removal services quotes faster than this and expecting clearance companies to commence and complete the job within tighter timeframes will not only add significant stress and increase the possibility of mistakes and missed deadlines, but it will also limit your contractor options to companies that are not already busy – which usually means the poorer ones in the market! It will also likely diminish your prospects of attaining considerable reuse, whether through sales to second-hand office furniture dealers or donations to charity by a considerable margin.  This is because the reuse market is notoriously undynamic.

Choosing the best office clearance specialist for the job

Once you’ve determined which items need to be cleared and established a schedule, you must hire an office clearance specialist to complete the process. The 4 ‘R’s of finding the correct company are References, Resources, Rapport, and Rates. To begin, if your clearance is vast and involved, hire a company with real-world experience and reputable references. References should be both recent and glowing.

Second, confirm that they have the resources they need available to complete the clearing. It’s fine if an office clearance firm hires a few temporary workers to help with a huge project, but the project manager, the majority of the clearance teams, and the site team supervisor must all be well-versed in their field. Third, build rapport. Ask to meet with the operational team (and not only the business development manager) before issuing the office clearance contract. It’s likely to get tense at some point during the clearance process, and you should be working with people you get along with and who communicate well.

Finally, let’s talk about rates. What price will they charge? To ensure you receive comparable and informed estimates, ask contractors to submit not only a total project pricing, but also a fee per van or truckload, the cubic capacity of their collection vehicle(s), and an estimate of how many loads they estimate the clearance can accommodate. This number will also supply helpful information about the office clearance company’s experience level. It may appear that a low price quotation due to a bad volume estimate is a positive thing, but in practice, an incorrectly priced proposal is more likely to result in project overruns, unpleasant requests for additional payments, and overall a lot of extra headaches.

Maximise rebates from office furniture clearance by selling second-hand office furniture and IT equipment to

Any reputable Office Clearance provider will have access to a network of specialised second-hand merchants, charities, and recycling organisations for the disposal of office furniture and IT equipment. So, once they’ve visited your premises, don’t be afraid to ask them what they’re thinking about in terms of reuse and recycling, as well as whether rebates are likely to be available. At the very least, they should discuss the separation of loads into distinct streams, such as wood, paper, metal, and general mixed garbage. They are going to ask about the quantity of products that could be reused and whether you are more interested in charitable donation or straightforward selling.

Out of curiosity, the second-hand office furniture market for items such as desks and chairs, filing cabinets, and pedestals is somewhat fickle, often very slow moving, and only works well for huge numbers of the same item in excellent shape. Selling or giving small pieces of various furniture takes time, and the prices offered, unless the item is extremely valuable, will increase your costs rather than reduce them. So, if you have 20 old office chairs of various quality, specification, and condition, you are unlikely to be able to pay for your trip to Barbados with the proceeds from their sale! However, 100 modern desks of the same type and in good condition are likely to be of interest to the used office furniture market, though you may have to wait a few weeks to find a buyer who will purchase them.

Similarly, operational IT equipment, particularly PCs, is resalable. Redundant computer monitors (CRTs) and appliances containing refrigerants (CFCs), such as air conditioners and refrigerators, are hazardous waste and thus particularly expensive to dispose of because they must be disposed of properly. Keep in mind that the disposal of any Waste Electronics and Electrical Equipment (WEEE) is a specialised and highly regulated field, so always ensure that when selecting the organisation you are working with, confirm the company is a licensed waste carrier and can give you the necessary evidence and documentation of where the WEEE is being transferred.

Legal and Environmental Compliance and Waste Reporting

You are responsible for ensuring that your waste is properly disposed of. If you hire a contractor to get rid of your garbage only for it to be fly-tipped or illegally exported, you may face criminal charges as well as civil claims for any resulting damage to third parties.

To begin, ensure that the clearance firm is a licenced waste carrier (carriers with a main office in Scotland are typically registered with SEPA, although either registration is acceptable) and that they have appropriate insurance and health and safety policies and practises in place for this kind of work. The project should surely include a risk assessment.

Once the clearance process begins, you should obtain a waste transfer note for each collection of waste made by the office clearance business from your location (eg, each vanload, skip, or roll-on roll-off [RORO] container). The waste transfer note should include the date, the collection address, the waste being taken, including its size and/or weight, and the names of your company and the waste company that is collecting it.

If any hazardous waste items are removed (often computer monitors, refrigerators, and air conditioners), you should receive a hazardous waste consignment note.

You will not require a waste transfer note for any items passed on for reuse as these are not considered to be waste. However, for your own internal records, always get a receipt for any reuse collection that specifies what things were taken, when they were taken, and to whose organisation they were sent.

Although not yet a legal necessity, it is becoming more typical for companies conducting an office clearance to receive a final report detailing what was removed, where it was taken, and how much was reused, repurposed, or disposed of. If materials are reused, details of which items were removed are typically provided (such as 150 desks, 20 filing cabinets), whereas if materials are sent for recycling or disposed of as general waste, this waste is more commonly described in terms of waste type (such as paper and cardboard) and overall weight and volume (for instance, 1250kg, 20 cubic yards). The contractor should also provide a detailed breakdown of which waste facilities each waste load was transported to, as well as the reported landfill diversion percentage rate of said facilities.

Lastly – Contact us for all your office clearance service needs

Well done on completing this guide. You’ve absolutely earned the right to relax in your office chair for 5 minutes and have a cup of tea.   Hopefully, you have not cleared out the office kettle in the process of removing your rubbish! If though, reading this guide has made you tired at the thought of any do it yourself office furniture removal, give us a call or book online to get your office cleared out twice as fast.


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