Whether you are looking for a commercial space for a new business or you want to relocate an existing one, it’s definitely a great step forward! The right commercial space for your business (in addition to the online setup) allows you to attract new clients and helps your venture reach new heights of success. It also enhances the productivity levels by giving your employees an energized workspace where they can function in a more effective and competent manner.
However, choosing the right commercial space for your business is not as simple as it sounds. It’s not something that you can do on a whim! What you need is a carefully designed location strategy, which has been developed after going through a sufficient amount of planning and research.
Before you start looking for a space, you need to have a clear idea of all the things you would like to have, and more importantly, all the things you absolutely wouldn’t like to have in your business space. Making such a list can be a tedious and time-consuming process, but it is quite essential because choosing a poor location can cause your business a huge amount of irreparable damage.
To make things simple for you, we have enlisted eight key points to keep in mind while choosing the right commercial space for your business.
How to Choose the Right Commercial Space for Your Business – Consideration 1
Understand What’s the Nature of Your Business
What kind of commercial space is ideal for you largely depends on what kind of business you have. You can explore commercial spaces available in business parks, shopping malls, shopping streets, industrial spaces, and professional buildings. But which one is best suitable for you should be based on what kind of work you intend to do.
So, the first step is to explore the nature of your business and based on that, make a list of everything it needs to succeed in the future.
- Retail Business – If you are planning to start a retail business, the obvious choice would be the malls and the downtown storefronts. You can also consider unconventional spaces like airports, temporary event kiosks, and free-standing commercial buildings.
- An Office Space – For office premises that do not rely on direct consumer traffic, commercial business spaces are best suited.
- Industrial Business – If your business is some sort of a manufacturing unit, look for options with ample warehousing space and easy access to major transportation routes. Also, keep in mind that these types of businesses often require a unique set of utilities and special licenses to operate.
It’s also important to keep in mind the brand identity of your business while making this decision. For example, if you are planning to start an upscale fashion boutique, a commercial space in a rural area does not sound like a promising idea!
How to Choose the Right Commercial Space for Your Business – Consideration 2
Should You Buy or Lease?
Depending on what kind of business setup you have and the amount of budget you can spend, decide whether you’d want to buy the property or you’d like to take it up on a lease. If you are unable to make this decision yourself, take advice from an accountant or a solicitor. You can also consult an architect or a fitout specialist to understand how much the construction and the process of interior designing are going to cost you.
It’s important to understand that buying or leasing a commercial space is very different from buying or renting a residential property. The agreement itself is structured differently. Plus, you have to keep in mind the tax implications of this decision as well.
If you choose to lease the space, you can look for options that come with some of the requisite business equipment needed for your venture. For example, if you are planning to start a cafe, you can look for a space that comes with commercial kitchen equipment.
How to Choose the Right Commercial Space for Your Business – Consideration 3
Choosing the Right Location
In this step towards choosing the right commercial space for your business, you need to explore all the options available in the market. As you set out to do so, you need to remember that one of the biggest reasons why you are getting a physical location for your business is to create the right impression upon your clients.
So, make sure your commercial space is located in such a location that goes with the brand image of your business. It’s not necessary to go for a prime location, but for the convenience of your employees and clients, it’s important that your space is well connected via public transportation. It should be easily accessible and well connected with at least a few good options of restaurants and cafes nearby.
Availability of parking space is another big concern. Make sure your property has access to ample parking space to cover the needs of both, your staff members as well as your clients. Direct and easy access to an airport can also be super advantageous, especially if your work involves dealing with delegates on a regular basis.
Once your location tick marks all these parameters, start exploring the neighbourhood to see what kind of competition you’ll be dealing with. It is also your job to ensure that the space is located in a safe and friendly locality. This is not just for the safety of your staff and clients, but for the safety of the business itself.
How to Choose the Right Commercial Space for Your Business – Consideration 4
Size and Layout of the Space
Depending on the nature and scale of your business, you can decide what kind of size and layout would work for your setup. For example, a call centre requires much less space per employee as compared to a fashion studio. It’s not just about your staff members’ comfort and convenience, there are actual laws governing the amount of space you need to provide each one of your employees.
The Building Code of Australia prescribes 10 sqm space per person in a commercial business setup. Though, in recent times, due to the Covid-19 situation, instead of 10, approx 15 sqm of space per employee deems appropriate. You also have to keep in mind your future expansion plans while deciding how big or small your commercial space should be. It’s always better to invest in a slightly larger space that can be utilized in the future, as your business grows, instead of relocating your venture to a new location altogether.
While choosing the right commercial space for your business, it’s important to review the layout of the space carefully. Sometimes businesses come with certain types of equipment and furniture that may require a very specific layout in your commercial space to function properly. For instance, an office space should ideally have a conference room to hold large meetings or presentations and a health clinic should definitely have a reception area.
How to Choose the Right Commercial Space for Your Business – Consideration 5
What About the Amenities?
The infrastructure and amenities of the building or the property are also a crucial aspect you need to keep in consideration. Old buildings can lack the requisite infrastructure necessary for high-tech operations. So, while choosing the right commercial space for your business, it’s wise to look for options that have adequate electrical, telecom, and air conditioning needs, not just to cover the present level of operations, but of the future as well. You can hire a professional engineer to test the amenities before making a final call.
Besides the amenities available within the building premises, you can also look for facilities available in your vicinity such as – availability of good restaurants, parks, supermarkets, post offices, banks, ATMs, etc. These facilities are crucial in order to retain your team for a longer duration of time. In fact, if your business is located near a well-established residential area where your staff members can buy or rent houses, nothing like it!
The presence of other businesses in the vicinity of your own business benefits you in the long run since you can count on them to bring in increased foot traffic. Also, keep in mind the interior design or the fit-out you want to have while choosing the location for your business. Keep an eye out for spaces with large openable windows, ample natural light, great ventilation, and landscaping.
How to Choose the Right Commercial Space for Your Business – Consideration 6
Explore Your Options and Then Shortlist the Best Ones
By the time you’ll reach this point of our guide on how to choose the right commercial space for your business, you would’ve already developed a pretty good idea about all the important things you need to look for in your new space. So, now comes the part when you actually step outside, explore what’s available in the market, shortlist the best options, and make the final call.
You can start this process by making a list of all the features and amenities you want in your property. Write them down on a piece of paper or on a notepad in your phone, starting with the most important ones first and then some of those which aren’t so important and can be skipped easily if you couldn’t find them. This list will work as your ‘list of priorities’ which you can consult every time you inspect a new property.
Do not rush through the process. Finding an appropriate commercial space can take weeks or even months, depending on how complex your requirements are and the availability (or lack) of decent enough spaces in the areas of your choice. It’s better to wait than to finalize a property that isn’t exactly the right choice for your business.
It’s ideal to narrow your search down to 4-5 properties. Think about these shortlisted options carefully by weighing all their pros and cons. If you want, you can even involve your staff members in this process. They can give you a fresh perspective on things that you were somehow missing out on.
How to Choose the Right Commercial Space for Your Business – Consideration 7
Understanding the Paperwork
Once you have finalized a location, it’s time to sign the papers. If you are renting the place, you have to sign the lease agreement and if you are buying the place, you have to sign the contract of sale. A few more legal documents could be needed along with the main ones, depending on which state the property is located in Australia.
But before signing anything, it’s super important to carefully go through all the terms and conditions in the presence of a legal advisor, real estate broker, or property lawyer. Make sure there aren’t any cost implications, hidden charges, or binding clauses that you aren’t aware of. You can ask the owner of the property to give you a copy of the lease agreement several days in advance so that you can get sufficient time to review it properly.
Go through each of the clauses carefully, in order to understand what the agreement covers and what kind of limitations you’ll be dealing with, if any. You should be particularly clear about the clauses related to building maintenance, liabilities, the scope of sub-leasing the place in the future, terminating the agreement before the stipulated period of time, etc. Ask your broker if there are any incentives for signing the lease for a longer duration of time. These may include a reduction in the rent, fit-out contributions, etc.
How to Choose the Right Commercial Space for Your Business – Consideration 8
What If I Decide to Relocate?
If your venture is a start-up or a small scale business, you might have to shift to a bigger space as your business grows. You could also decide to move to a new place in case there are some serious issues with your existing location and it’s just not working out for you.
While choosing the right commercial space for your business, it’s wise to keep in mind the possibility of encountering such scenarios. So, before finalizing a location, it’s important to consider your expansion plans for the future as well. Ask yourself questions like –
- At what rate, my business is growing at the moment?
- Would my staff members and clients/customers be able to feel comfortable in this space, five years down the line?
- What about the increase in rent every year? Would I be able to afford this place in the long run?
Finding a commercial space that ticks all the boxes concerning location, size, layout, budget, access, amenities, and transportation is not an easy job. However, with the right kind of preparation and guidance, you can navigate through this process effortlessly. Spend some time developing a strategy with the right amount of research and planning behind you to make things easier for you.
Keep in mind the nature of your business and the brand image you want to create, choose the right location with the right kind of size and layout, check all the amenities, and understand the terms of the lease or the contract carefully. Take your time, be patient, and make the final call after consulting a competent property lawyer as well as a fit-out expert.
How ImpeccaBuild Can Help You in Choosing the Right Commercial Space for Your Business
Once you finalize a space, the next step is to design and decorate your space, which needs a certain amount of additional planning work and creative thinking. Hiring an experienced fitout professional would certainly make things easier and quicker. Call Us On: 1300 LETS BUILD or send us an email on – [email protected]
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