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PostPosted: Sun Nov 04, 2012 8:01 pm 
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Joined: Sun Nov 04, 2012 7:20 pm
Posts: 2
Location: England
Hi,

I expect my questions may be difficult or not possible to answer due to the very early stages of my business plan but I wanted to see if any guidance could be given. My question show my limited knowledge but I do wish to increase my knowledge providing the business seems viable from a cost perspective.

Firstly I do not plan to start my business for at least a year or 2 to allow time to research the local market and get a good handle on design, construction and implementation etc.

What I am currently doing is trying to calculate approximate costs to start the business with the goal of investing more funds should the business be successful.

I plan to purchase a commercial industrial unit away from residential homes. This unit will ideally be single story with a concrete floor and brick or block-work walls. I expect it to have a corrugated metal roof or other form of pitched roof. I will make a lot of assumptions in this post for planning purposes but understand everything could change depending on the building. For now I just need to know if it is worth spending the next year or 2 researching.

I need to estimate the cost of making 2 rehearsal spaces approximately 20 square meters each. If these rooms work well I will then aim to build 2 or 3 more and eventually a control and live room for recording. The main aspect of the business will be rehearsal rooms and if funds ever allow the recording studio will be the last luxury.

So I'll be building 2 rehearsal rooms on a concrete slab with no domestic neighbors and to start with the studio will only be open on evenings and weekends so I don't need to quite my day job. With this in mind I wish to estimate the type of construction required for these rooms and the cost to do this. My budget to buy the property is up to £150,000. I then need to minimise the cost of the internal structures as should the business not succeed this money will be hard to recover compared to the property which I can sell to get the money back. I know it would be better to say I have £x for the room construction but it is too early in the planning for this unfortunately (As cheap as is practical).

I plan to be very picky with the building to ensure I can minimise what I need to spend on internal construction so single story and concrete floor are my main focus. Are there any other elements of the outer skin which make a building particularly good for turning into a studio?

As I won't need huge amounts of sound isolation for neighbors what would be the most cost effective construction for the 2 inner rooms? I presume stud walls stuffed with insulation and several layers of the appropriate thickness drywall. Would green glue and any other decoupling techniques be required? There will be an air gap between the 2 internal structures. Is stuffing this also with insulation recommended?

There will be no windows in the rooms but I will obviously need to focus on the doors and HVAC. Would it be best to build the ceiling of each room on top of the walls or should this be hung from the buildings roof?

Also will the walls need to be on neoprene pads or can they just be mounted directly to the concrete slab?

If I can establish roughly what construction is required I can obtain quotes from contractors in order for me to see if the business plan is financially viable. If it is then I will do plenty more research using this forum and the books that are regularly recommended to help with studio design.

Sorry if my questions are too vague and I understand answers may not be possible without a specific building and relative dimensions but I thought it was worth a try.

Really appreciate any help that can be given.

Thanks,

Stu


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PostPosted: Tue Nov 13, 2012 3:41 am 
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Joined: Thu Aug 21, 2008 10:17 am
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Location: Santiago, Chile
Hi "Stu117", and welcome to the forum! :)

Quote:
I expect my questions may be difficult or not possible to answer due to the very early stages of my business plan but I wanted to see if any guidance could be given. ...
Firstly I do not plan to start my business for at least a year or 2 to allow time to research the local market and get a good handle on design, construction and implementation etc.
Asking early is a really smart thing to do! Seriously, you'd be shocked if you saw the number of people who come here with absolutely unworkable designs, saying "I'm going to start building this tomorrow, and I already bought all the materials. Is this any good?" It is sad having to break the bad news to them... :) So the fact that you are starting to ask so early in the process bodes VERY well for a successful outcome.

Quote:
What I am currently doing is trying to calculate approximate costs to start the business with the goal of investing more funds should the business be successful.
A very rough guideline for figuring the cost of building a studio is to use the cost of building an up-scale house in the same area. Some contractors have a flat rate that they will give you, as "zzz pounds per square meter", so just call around a few in your area, and ask for that rate. That will give you a good "ball-park" figure of how much you should budget for building from scratch. On the other hand, if you plan to just build your studio within an existing building, which seems to be what you are talking about, then the cost will be much lower, and based more on the cost of renovating a similar building in your area. For example, if your idea is to take an empty, unfinished garage and turn that into a studio, then ask some contractors for their flat rate for converting a similar structure into a "granny flat".

Quote:
My budget to buy the property is up to £150,000.
I have no idea what the going rate is in your area, but it sounds like you have a reasonable budget there. Assuming a total of 100 square meters of space, with 80 set aside for actual acoustically isolated rehearsal rooms, that works out to between £1,500 and £1,900 per square meter. That sounds very reasonable to me. But once again, do some research on the going rate for renovations and build-outs in your area, and that will give you a good idea of the final cost.

Quote:
I then need to minimise the cost of the internal structures as should the business not succeed this money will be hard to recover compared to the property which I can sell to get the money back.
Maybe you could plan to build some of it with a modular design, and then re-sell the modules as well (to other studios), to get back some of that money too? Several things would be made modular in the studio, if it is thought out well.

Quote:
I plan to be very picky with the building to ensure I can minimise what I need to spend on internal construction so single story and concrete floor are my main focus. Are there any other elements of the outer skin which make a building particularly good for turning into a studio?
The roof. If you happen to build in a location where you need a lot of isolation, then the roof will be a big factor, so look for the thickest, sturdiest roof you can find. If you have a place with a concrete slab roof, then that is excellent. Then metal roofing: not so good.

Quote:
As I won't need huge amounts of sound isolation for neighbors what would be the most cost effective construction for the 2 inner rooms?
Perhaps not from neighbors, but you will still need lots between the rooms. If you have four rehearsal spaces, and a full rock band in each, then you are going to need some serious isolation to keep them from disturbing beach other. That implies good isolation all around, to the outside world as well. You cannot physically isolate well between two rooms while also NOT isolating to the outside world.

Quote:
I presume stud walls stuffed with insulation and several layers of the appropriate thickness drywall. Would green glue and any other decoupling techniques be required?
That's the basic concept, yes. Each room is built as a free-standing, self-supporting structure that is totally decoupled form the other rooms. All that the share is the floor.

Quote:
Would it be best to build the ceiling of each room on top of the walls or should this be hung from the buildings roof?
Better to build on top of the walls. That give the walls better structural support, and increases isolation. It is also easier to build.

Quote:
Also will the walls need to be on neoprene pads or can they just be mounted directly to the concrete slab?
Depends on the floor. Neoprene pads will not help with acoustic isolation, since the walls still need to be firmly bolted through it into the slab, but the pads could help to give you a good seal under the walls if the slab is not in good shape: uneven, pitted, cracked, etc.

Quote:
Sorry if my questions are too vague
Not at all! Those are very smart questions, and will indeed affect the overall cost greatly.

- Stuart -

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I want this studio to amaze people. "That'll do" doesn't amaze people.


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PostPosted: Tue Nov 13, 2012 7:07 pm 
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Joined: Sun Nov 04, 2012 7:20 pm
Posts: 2
Location: England
Thanks so much for your reply. It is really helpful.

I have just got Rod Gervais' book to read more on the topic and my next step will to be to contact some local builders for quotes.

I still have a large amount of research into the local market to ensure there is sufficient demand for another studio in my area so will be taking a good 12 months or more to get my plan anywhere near the construction phase. This should hopefully mean through reading and using this forum I will been in a good position knowledge wise to get a good outcome.

I'm so glad I found this forum before I got too far into the process.

Thanks again,

Stu


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