A new office space requires expenditures of time, money and energy. The last thing you want to do is move again at the end of the lease term because you choose a location that didn’t match your company’s future. Below are 5 simple tips to assurance the right decisions are made upfront.
Tip One – Strategic Economics
As a company, use strategic goals already defined. Before you consider hiring tenant representation (tenant rep) and searching for office space, jot down your real estate goals based on your business plan. Example one: If your focus is to enhance efficiency and reducing costs, you might want to consider spaces in green office buildings, or smart offices to ideally boost worker productivity and lower utility bills overall. Example two: If your goal is to boost your brand image and attract new clients, an office space in a building with a trendy reputation or state-of-the-art center for your industry is more beneficial.
Tip Two – Enlist A Qualified Professional Team
A tenant representation broker is a valuable asset for any business during the commercial real estate search and negotiation process. They don’t cost you a dime! Brokers help you determine which properties that fit your goals and get you into buildings that you might otherwise never have an opportunity to tour. With their in-depth knowledge of the market, they are helpful in negotiations to ensure you receive a fair deal. The landlord covers the cost of the broker’s service, so it doesn’t cost anything to benefit from their experience. Did I mention, your tenant rep is paid for by the landlord?
Tip Three – Consult Your Office Team
Internally consult your management team and find out what their departments needs are for efficient workspace. Have they changed since you last moved? Consider conducting an employee survey to find out which amenities and features they desire in a new office space. Does your team want to be closer to restaurants, shopping or in a safer location? Surveys help you understand how your employees arrive to work, so you can evaluate your parking needs and public transportation.
Tip Four – Knowledge is Power
A key reason to enlist qualified tenant representation is to understand current real estate market conditions in your area. They know the market pulse. It’s impossible to know if you’re getting a fair deal and negotiate effectively without knowing market conditions. A good tenant rep takes the time to research the area and find out what lease terms are currently trending for your type of industry. They know what incentives the landlord may offer to secure a strong tenant. Often they know a landlords’ reputations. Tenant reps key in on which businesses are located in buildings you’re considering so you can evaluate if those businesses are synergistic or potential conflicts.
Tip Five – It always takes longer than you think
Commercial real estate takes time to find the perfect space. Lease negotiations take time. Moving takes time. Waiting until the last minute leaves having to settle for a space that is less than perfect and reduces your negotiation edge with the landlord. The landlord always knows when you are in a pickle and they take advantage of it. Start thinking about your space 6 – 12 months prior to you lease expiration.