What to look for when renting a commercial officeThe vast majority of businesses in New Zealand lease their offices spaces. Finding the perfect space makes for happy staff, more sales, better efficiency and, at the end of the day, a better bottom-line.
In this blog we offer some advice on what to look for when renting a commercial office when you are on the hunt for that new office space and next time we’ll talk you through how to negotiate a new lease.
We’ll cover the basics in two parts:
the internal and the external aspects of leasing office space.
The internal factors relate to the inner workings of your business. Here are some questions you’ll need to ask before you start your search for a new home:
• What is the purpose of your office space – is it going to be client-facing or purely for behind-the-scenes work, such as design, production or business development?
• What layout and service requirements do you require to ensure it meets your needs?
• How many people do you need to accommodate now, and in 6 – 12 months time?
• What is your budget?
Now when it comes to finding that perfect piece of real estate here are the top three external things to consider:
Location, location, location
The nature of your business will determine how visible your office should be. If you rely on drop-ins then of course you will want to be in a high traffic area, preferably with ground floor, street facing access.
Even if you don’t rely on drop-ins, it’s still important to be in an area that is accessible and central your clients’ location. The last thing you want if for customers to go somewhere else just because getting to you is inconvenient.
Location is not only important for clients, it’s important for your staff as well. It you are off the beaten track it may be difficult to attract good staff. Being close to public transport is a good idea.
When you are looking at signing a new lease, make sure you are well aware of all the set-up costs that may be required to get your new space up and running. This could include new signage, changes to the layout, and general repairs and renovations.
Some of this could be your landlord’s responsibility depending on your contract. Try to negotiate as much as possible into your lease if you can. This will help you to save costs and also cut down on confusion when it comes to who pays for what.
Layout and parking
What sort of layout you need will depend on the size and nature of your business. Do you want an open-plan office, small offices, breakout rooms, boardrooms…there are loads of possibilities. Also, think about the facilities in the building; for example, the kitchen, bathrooms, meeting rooms etc. Are they adequate for your needs and are they shared or are they included in your lease only.
And don’t forget car parking. Your staff will need somewhere to park and your customers will too.
Once you’ve found the perfect property, now you will have to negotiate your lease. Find out how in our next blog.