Five Mistakes to Avoid When Looking for Office Space



Where you work matters a lot. Do not fall into these traps.

The right office space is integral to the success of your company, but finding it is not easy. Identifying these five typical problems will give you a better chance of improving your search.

1) Not Considering Your Options

The best way to find a suitable office is to consider all your options. Looking at only one type of space is a common mistake. It cannot only prevent you from finding the right place, but can also force you to pay more than necessary. The more options you look into, the more leverage you have when negotiating a deal. If you have a short list of five properties, you will have a better opportunity to negotiate price and terms, than if you only have one or two options.

2) Miscalculating Company Growth

There are a few ways to miscalculate company growth. All of them result in undesirable scenarios. If you anticipate growth that Five Mistakes to Avoid When Looking for Office Spaceis faster than what is realistically possible, you will lease an office that is too big for you. You will waste money on space you are not using. However, there are plenty of opportunities to sublease your extra space to another company. There are also communal space services, that will let you rent out parts of your office for short and long terms.

If you lowball your company’s growth, then you will be stuck in a space and lease, that cannot accommodate your company. Your team may not work effectively, if they do not have the space they need. Subleasing the entire office is your best option here too. It will allow you to relocate to a bigger option. Plan to have at least 100 to 225 square feet, for each person at your company.

3) Underestimating the Total Cost

People do this all the time. They think that rent is all they will pay to use a space. After factoring in things like utilities and maintenance, the total monthly cost may be markedly different from the dollar amount you see on your lease. In older buildings, these extra costs can build up quickly. See exactly what you will need to spend money on, to make your space “work ready,” and leave some wiggle room for unexpected costs.

4) Overestimating What You Can Do on Your Own

So much more goes into finding a commercial space than just picking an office you like. Engineers, brokers, designers, insurance agents, and office planners can all assist in the search. For example, Designers get discounts on, and have a lot of knowledge about office pieces. They know exactly what you will need, and what you will not need Office design is about way more than just picking things that look cool. Realistically decide what you can and cannot do on your own, so you will be well-prepared to find and move into your new space.

5) Being Stubborn on Area

Instead of sticking with an area by intuition, define the traits you want in your office’s location. Do you want a place that is close to transit? It is good for parking or in a popular area? By deciding what you want before choosing an area, your broker can help you find the right place for you.

If you can identify and fix these common office search problems, you will save money, time, and effort. Find a space that drives success and employee satisfaction.

The Young Entrepreneur Council (YEC) is an invite-only organization comprised of the world’s most promising young entrepreneurs. In partnership with Citi, YEC recently launched BusinessCollective, a free virtual mentorship program that helps millions of entrepreneurs start and grow businesses.

About the author: Aron Susman

Aron Susman is the cofounder and CFO of TheSquareFoot. He lives in Houston, TX.

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