High-quality construction projects start with lots of planning and research. Developers and contractors have to balance multiple factors, such as budget, energy efficiency, durability, and appearance. When investing in a commercial property, safety should always be the top priority.
One of the first steps you should take when investing in a commercial property is connecting with a fire protection company that installs, inspects, and monitors your entire building. Allegiant Fire Protection works with building owners every day to deliver high-quality, timely, and professional fire protection services.
Don’t Make Fire Protection an Afterthought
Within “eight minutes, a fire is beyond the room of origin, and people are eight times as likely to die in a building fire after those eight minutes,” according to The National Fire Protection Association (NFPA).
To ensure the safety of tenants and workers, contractors need to consider fire protection very early in the construction project. Failure to prioritize fire protection during the planning and research phase can have serious consequences.
Work with a Fire Protection Company Early in the Construction Process
While working with a contractor, you need to involve your developers and fire protection team as soon as possible.
The earlier all three groups connect, the easier it is to design and lay out everything you need rather than fitting in parts afterward. Not only does this protect you from building code violations, but it saves you time and money in the long run.
Find out from your contractor if they have a preferred team, and if not, seek a fire protection company willing to install your system and provide around-the-clock monitoring to ensure your building and occupants are always safe.
Avoid Confusion About Fire Code Requirements
Understanding fire codes and regulations is daunting without the expertise and knowledge of trained technicians. New constructions are not one-size-fits-all, so the fire requirements for your structure and building components may differ from another one down the street.
As spaces increase in size and occupant capacity, the regulations become stricter to avoid serious injuries to your occupants.
Put Safety and Accessibility at the Forefront of Fire Protection System Design
When talking to your contractor, consider the safety obstacles the building’s structure creates. Think about these questions ahead of time.
• Can the fire department easily control a fire in the planned building?
• Are the emergency exits easily accessible?
• Will it be easy for those with physical handicaps to enter and exit the building during an emergency?
Remember, if someone is stuck or injured, it doesn’t matter if they have a disability or not; they need assistance, and your responsibility as a commercial building owner is to protect them as much as possible while inside your building.
Your fire protection team also assists in helping plan your fire escape route, choose the right fire extinguisher for your business, and test your fire protection system.
Leave Room in the Construction Budget for Fire Alarm Systems
Fire protection systems account for only a tiny percentage of a contractor’s budget for commercial and residential spaces – about 1 to 1.5 percent of the total cost. But, retrofitting a fire protection system into a fully-built space can cost about 50% more than that original budget.
It is essential to plan early for what kind of fire protection system you need to avoid any last-minute changes and high costs. Additionally, the small cost of a fire protection system can lead to enormous benefits.
A fire protection system costs roughly $1.35 per square foot in the United States. According to the NFPA, in 2022, fire damage costs totaled $18 billion in the United States.
The Risk of Fire has Increased with Modern Building Materials
Modern building materials are incredibly flammable. Thirty years ago, families had approximately 17 minutes to escape a house fire. Today, it’s about three minutes.
Most new constructions use cheaper, synthetic materials that are highly flammable as opposed to the bricks and natural wood of yesteryear.
With so little time to escape a fire, commercial buildings need to have proper fire protection.
At the same time, fire protection is an ever-evolving field, constantly working to save as many lives as possible. In 2022, there were “3,790 civilian fire deaths and 13,250 reported civilian fire injuries.” The goal is to continue designing fire protection systems that lower those yearly totals.
Teamwork Between Contractors and Fire Protection Experts Saves Time and Money
With demand for buildings increasing in terms of appearance, structure, cost, and safety, it’s more important than ever that contractors and developers properly balance these often-competing goals.
Maximizing the fire safety of a building requires teamwork between contractors, developers, and fire protection experts like Allegiant. Planning for fire safety in the early stages of construction can reduce costs, increase the safety of occupants, and ensure that you meet all legal requirements.
Work with a Fire Protection Company You can Trust
Allegiant Fire Protections delivers on-site recommendations, installations, maintenance and 24/7 monitoring service. Every fire alarm system design is built specifically for your building by our NICET-certified technicians to deliver your commercial building the safety and relief you deserve.
Prioritize safety in your construction project – reach out to Allegiant Fire Protection today for expert guidance in early planning, installation, and monitoring of high-quality fire protection systems, ensuring the well-being of occupants, legal compliance, and cost-effective solutions.