If you are looking for appropriate office space for your business, it may seem a daunting task. Where do you start and what should your criteria be?
Location is often the deciding factor. Your new offices need to be in the right location, of course, but also practical for you and your employees to use and, importantly, in-keeping with your corporate image. When choosing your location, look carefully at the surrounding businesses. Are they in keeping with your image? Will they help you to attract more clients or, worse, will they put clients off?
The commute for you and your staff
No doubt you are fairly sure whereabouts you want your new offices to be but there is more to think about than just the post code. You will also need to consider public transport links. Is your new office space close to a main line or underground station. Is there a car park staff can use? What kind of commute will your staff have? Is their new commute likely to be a lot longer or more complicated than their current commute? If it is, what kind of impact will that have on your work force?
If the office space you are considering is very cheap, is it because the area has a bad reputation? Not only may the local area affect the way clients see your business, your staff will be working there for up eight hours a day, sometimes arriving and leaving in the dark. Clients and staff will need to feel secure as they travel to and from your offices.
If you are locating away from a town or city, is there a reliable, local courier nearby? It could be a serious problem if you often rely on a courier service. If you need to entertain a client, are there any good restaurants nearby?
If you have a business in London and are looking for office space EC3 and EC4 may be worth considering as they are very close to excellent facilities and are less expensive than properties in central London.
When you have decided on a suitable location, there are a number of other factors you will need to take into account. What infrastructure and equipment will you need? Is the office space you have chosen large enough for all the furniture and computers you have or need?
Have you thought about where your business might be in five years time? If you have no idea it might be best to avoid a long term lease. The traditional lease period is usually five years. If your business is a start-up you might prefer to ask about shorter term leases. Offices for rent that include reception services and IT facilities can often be leased for as little as three months but if you opt for something like this do make sure that you can extend the lease when you want to.
As the members of the Senate Small Business and Entrepreneurship Committee introduced a bill that would make loans more accessible to women in July of 2014, it may not be enough in order to initiate growth. The bill allows lenders to create more flexible terms for women borrowers as opposed to those of which men receive. It is unknown whether this will be incentive enough for women to apply for more business loans or if lenders will alter current practices to accommodate female borrowers.
Consider what you may do if your business grows rapidly. Is it possible to rent extra space nearby?
Finally, always check who is responsible for maintenance of the property. If it’s you, this could become a huge cost and one you will need to budget for.