- 20th Dec 2022
What is the Difference Between a School Refit, Refurb, and Renovation?
If you’re looking to improve your school building, it’s expected that you would seek advice from trained and experienced professionals. Talk in general terms with anybody in the building trade and the terms you’re most likely to come across can be categorised as the Three Rs: refitting, refurbishing, and renovating.
These are all common terms but it’s not always clear what they mean in a practical sense. The English language is incredibly fluid and words used in similar contexts often have their meanings merged with one another until it’s difficult to determine what means what.
In this article, we’re going to explain the difference between school fit outs (or refits), school refurbishments, and a school renovation. Hopefully, this will prove useful when discussing your requirements with your chosen contractor.
School fit outs normally involve adding new fixtures and fittings that weren’t part of the building’s original remit. That could be new furniture or equipment designed to make school life more engaging for your pupils and staff, or new facilities to replace ones that are past their prime.
Refurbishment refers to the look of a school – it’s overall aesthetic and visual appeal. Do the exterior walls needed cleaning, treating, and painting? Are you planning to redecorate the school interior or lay new floors? Are you rebranding the school and looking to incorporate a new colour scheme? All these and more count as refurbishment.
Another term for school renovation is school remodelling, since you’re changing the physical structure of the building itself. Of the Three R’s, this is perhaps the most ambiguous term, as it could refer to a major repair, a building extension, a redesign, or even restoration work.
Which of the Three Rs is Right for Me?
It all depends on how much work needs doing to your school and the nature of that work. Fortunately, there are a few simple questions you can ask yourself to help you narrow things down.
Are the School’s Fixtures and Fittings Up to Date?
If your school facilities are no longer fit for purpose in a modern-day educational establishment, you probably need a refit. This process is all about updating your fixtures and fittings to suit your current environment and to meet the expectations of your students, their parents, and the school governors.
Does Your School Look Out-Of-Date?
If your school is looking tired and worn, it’s not a conducive atmosphere for learning. If your teachers have been staring at the same paintwork and colour scheme for years as pupils pass from one end of their academic career to the next, it could probably do with freshening up. If that’s the case, you need to consider school refurbishments. This is a cosmetic solution, rather than a structural one, where the goal is to improve the look of the school, either inside or out (or both).
Does Your School Need Major Changes?
If you’re planning to change the layout or overall structure, this would be considered a renovation of a school building and it covers several possibilities. You might need to perform major structural repairs, such as fitting a new roof, or you may want to add an extension to the building to accommodate more staff and students. Similarly, you may wish to knock down or build some interior walls to reshape the layout of study areas. You might want to make the school building more accessible by adding ramps or lifts. All of these things would count as a renovation.
Whether you need a refit, refurbishment, or renovation, Westcountry Group is here to help. We work with schools across the South of England, providing a first-rate service for every job we take on. Call the team today on 0330 030 0330 to discuss your school’s requirements and to arrange a free consultation.