Every day, plenty of business owners search for new office space and come up empty handed. The good news is that nearly all of them eventually find a physical location that suits their needs and fits their budget. But the process can be a challenge and is fraught with pitfalls, especially for newcomers to the business real estate game. If you’re one of the many people currently in the hunt for an ideal place to call headquarters, then you need to make a plan. Here are five key things you need to do in order to find a place where you can get your work done every day, and hopefully do so in style, with minimal interruptions.
1. Work with a Commercial RE Agent
Commercial real estate agents are trained professionals who truly know the lay of the land, and can help match you with a space that is appropriate for your needs and your budget. If you set out to find a place to call your own, the task is almost impossible without the assistance of a RE pro. Real estate contracts for offices are much more complex than standard home purchase agreements. That’s why commercial agents typically have more than 10 years of experience in the field. Hire an agent as soon as you know you need space.
2. Plan Ahead for Expenses
Coming up with an initial payment on a business lease can be a daunting experience for new owners who are short of funds. Many entrepreneurs refinance student loans in order to take advantage of lower monthly payments, a lower interest rate, and a longer time to repay the obligation. But it’s the lower monthly payments that will free up enough cash to help with those initial lease fees.
3. Consider Space-Sharing
One of the newest trends is office-sharing. Experienced agents can hook you up with someone who is willing to share space with you. First, you need to inform your agent that this is something you’re interested in. Next, you will speak with prospective partners about how the sharing arrangement will work. Going this route can save you a huge amount of money on one of the biggest expense’s owners have, which is the cost of rent. Sharing this space can also open up networking within similar lines of business.
4. Start Out Small
There’s no need to find the office you think you might need in the future. Save that task for another time and place. For right now, you don’t need the largest place in the highest-traffic consumer center. Start out small with a basic space that accommodates your essential needs. Later on, when profits are higher and your needs change, think about moving into a more spacious place.
5. Don’t Commit to a Long-Term Lease
When you’re just starting out, opt for shorter lease periods. That gives you the ability to adapt later on if need be, but it also means you’ll not be locked into a place that is less than ideal.