How to Start a Law Firm: Office Furniture and Supplies
Attorneys looking to start up a firm often look for the best furniture, equipment, and supplies available so as to impress their prospective clients once the office is open. However, lawyers just starting out their careers or making a clean, fresh transition from another practice may have to be more practical in their considerations. Whether furniture and other equipment is necessary, or more of a luxury, is a determination each lawyer will have to make in the context of their budget and past experience. In essence, this is one of the first of many business decisions that a lawyer must make. After all, a beautiful and impressive mahogany or cherry wood desk might not look very useful later on should you have to cut costs on other equipment which would have made your work product better and more efficient.
Furniture: A Necessary Expense?
First of all, there's no question that any office needs furniture, but most lawyers should seriously consider obtaining used furniture for the office. These days, it is easy to find countless types of furniture being advertised online at highly discounted prices. Another option for the budget conscious is renting furniture, which will keep your costs down early on and allow upgrades later as your startup grows. You can browse through catalogs, read internet reviews, and visit some local office equipment stores to check out what's available, and then proceed to either buy or rent something comparable. The following is a short list and description of the basic necessities that any starting law office will need.
Finally, the rest of your staff will also need most of the above items to the extent applicable. If you have worked with them previously, they will surely be keen to tell you of their respective needs. Even if you plan on hiring from scratch, you should try, within reason, to make them happy when obtaining your furniture!
Supplies and Equipment: A Checklist to Get Started
The following is a basic checklist of supplies you will probably need for your law office. You may be able to negotiate some volume discounts by contacting a local office supply store or an office supply catalog supplier. You can also potentially obtain discounts by opening an account with a particular supplier (or more than one).
A law office typically requires the following:
-coffee machine and mugs (at the top of the list, of course)
-protective desk covering(s)
-paper (regular and legal-size)
-a vast supply of sticky notes
-pens of various colors
-2 and 3 hole punches
-a rubber date stamp and ink pad
-three ring binders
-colored sticky tabs
The above list is certainly not all-inclusive, but are the basics which would be necessary in most offices. It is probably advisable to simply visit a nearby store, or ask your staff to select desirable supplies, as well. As with some of the items furniture above, cutting corners on supplies is not advisable because they tie in so closely to your work product. Whether it be through the Internet or at your local store, try to find the best deals on the supplies, but do get everything you need to make your office a smooth running business.