There are a lot of things to consider when deciding where to find office space for rent. A great office environment will make you and your employees more productive, strengthen your brand image, and provide a sense of comfort and security.
Studies show that 97 percent of workers feel that their office space directly represents how their employers feel about them. Further research shows that only around 10 percent of workers are satisfied with their work environment.
Carefully choosing the office space for your business will ensure that you see a great return on your investment and build a business that you – and your employees – can be proud of.
10 Steps to Choosing the Right Office Space for Your Business
1. Determine how much space you need
A business that requires space for 100+ employees will have drastically different space requirements than a business that only needs one or two desks. While large enterprises will likely need an entire floor in an office building, smaller businesses may be perfectly comfortable in a studio or co-working space. Either way, here are a few questions that will help you estimate how much space you need:
- How many people are on your team?
- Does your business require employees to sit at their desks every day? In other words, can you offer remote work or a hybrid option?
- Do you need to leave room for growth?
- How much space do you need for each person? (It’s recommended to allow for about 70 square feet per employee. However, you know your business best! Consider everyone’s job requirements and day-to-day activities)
2. Think about the amenities you want and need
What kind of things are absolutely necessary for the function of your business, what would take your office environment to the next level, and what kind of things would be nice to have? Also, take into consideration what your clients need. While some offices don’t invite clients in at all, others may need to provide a waiting area, snack bar, etc.
Here’s a list of amenities you might want to look out for:
- High-speed internet capability
- Fully-furnished offices
- A property management team
- Printing, scanning, and copying services
- Private conference rooms and offices
- Mail service
- Beverage bar or kitchenette
- 24/7 access
3. Compare the types of offices in your area
There are many different types of offices available to business owners, and each has its own set of benefits. Understanding what’s available in your area will help you decide which is best for your business.
- Office suites. This is a great option for businesses that require large teams. Office suites offer enough space to collaborate and typically can be customized to your unique needs. Some suites offer private entrances for business owners and their employees, as well as full kitchens.
- Private office. Private offices are usually great for teams of about a dozen people. This option might be best for start-ups, an office in a brand-new location, freelance teams, or teams that prefer to stay small and tight-knit.
- Dedicated desk. A dedicated desk is the best option for a business of one. This might be a small business owner who runs an online store, an entrepreneur who wants a place to network with other entrepreneurs, or a freelancer. Dedicated desks are typically seen in co-working spaces, but business owners can certainly rent a single studio and customize a dedicated desk space for themselves.
- Virtual office. If you are comfortable operating your business from home or have a team that works remotely, you may just need a space to hold occasional meetings and pick up business mail.
4. Check out the area
Once you’ve located a few areas that have the office space you’re looking for, it’s time to get out there and explore! Check out the other local businesses, places to grab a bite to eat or something to drink, the parking situation, and scope out some relaxing outdoor areas that would be nice for mid-day breaks. You might also want to see if the location is accessible using public transportation, so you can accommodate employees and clients that use those services.
5. Carefully consider lease options
You don’t want to get caught off guard by lease terms that you weren’t aware of before you signed on. Pay close attention to the lease duration, what your renewal options are, what would happen if you need to break the lease, and what actions would give your landlord grounds to evict you.
Also, you should have a clear understanding of what is included with your rent. Are you only paying to use the space or does the rent payment include property taxes, insurance, and maintenance? Are there common areas you have access to?
6. Determine what you can afford
Office space can a valuable investment that leads to more business and, therefore, more revenue. However, you don’t want to pour too much money into leasing a space that your business can’t afford. Sit down with your finances (we recommend hiring a professional accountant to help with this) and see what your business can afford.
7. Keep an eye out for leases with flexible terms
As we saw in March of 2020, you never know what’s going to happen! If there’s another life-disrupting event, you want to be sure that you’re not stuck paying for something you don’t need anymore. At the same time, you want to see if there are opportunities for lease discounts. For example, if you commit to a 3-year term, can you pay less per month than you would for a 12-month lease?
8. Consider health and safety features
Health and safety are top priorities these days. Does the building offer a security team or secure entry? Are there automatic doors, locks, and bathroom fixtures that reduce touchpoints? What’s the protocol in the event of an emergency, like a fire or earthquake? When was the last time the building was inspected? Not only are these things crucial for peace of mind, but they can help keep you and your business out of legal trouble.
9. Personalize your space
As we stated at the beginning of this article, employees care about their work environment and many don’t think their offices are up to snuff. So, involve your employees in curating a workspace that everyone loves! Talk to the building owners or management company and see what your customization options are – can you paint the walls? Move desks around? Are dogs allowed? These things can make a huge difference to employee happiness!
10. Consider business growth
Does your office space and lease duration support business longevity? In other words, is this space you can grow into or will you quickly grow out of it? What would happen if you expect to grow a certain amount and you end up with more space than you need – can you transfer to a smaller space with a different lease? What if you grow faster than expected – can you get into a bigger space? These are great questions to ask before you sign!
Allow Speed Commercial Real Estate to Find Your Office Space
Speed Commercial Real Estate can get you into an office space that is perfect for your business and employees. We will take the time to sit down with you, understand your unique needs, and offer a property that exceeds expectations. Contact us today to start your office space search!