How to Find a New Office Location for Your Business
It’s tough to find the perfect office for your business. There’s so many different things you need to account for: office space, future growth, location safety, customer/client accessibility, commuting/parking for your employees, etc.—where do you even start?
Don’t worry! Just take it one step at a time. If you take all of the following into consideration, then finding the perfect office will be a breeze.
Consider Your Business Needs
Before you start your location search, you need to consider the current and future needs of your business when it comes your workplace. First, think about what you’ll need in the short-term. Is your office too cramped? How many more desks/offices do you need to accommodate all your existing staff? Do you need conference rooms? Maybe you need to get an office with a kitchen so your employees can prepare coffee and food.
Then, you should consider what your business is going to look like over the next couple years. You should try and figure out how many employees you plan on hiring so you’ll be able to find an office space that can accommodate them, too. Carefully budget for your company’s future so you can make an educated guess.
Consider Your Demographics
If you own a retail business or any business that has walk-in customers, you’ll have different location needs. You should look for a retail space in an area where there’s lots of consumers who desire the product or service you’re selling. Use a demographic mapping tool to help you find areas where there’s a large number of consumers who want a business like yours.
If you’re a local business, you want to make sure that your new office location is located somewhere that’s highly visible and easy to promote.
When it comes to finding property, the internet can be both a blessing and a curse. It’s easier than ever to find a wealth of available office spaces, but that can also make your search extremely overwhelming—it may also cause lots of other business to vie for the same office, and you’ll have to compete with them for it. That’s why it’s important to consider your business needs before you begin your location search—you’ll be able to search for specific office spaces and amenities.
Most of the spaces you find are going to be located in office buildings. But if you live in an urban area, you might also want to see if there are old Victorian homes you can rent out. Nowadays, these old structures are oftentimes leased out to businesses, and they provide a pleasantly homey feel if you don’t have a large staff.
Don’t forget to look into off market commercial real estate. An off market property is one that’s not being listed or openly promoted, and you can usually buy it for a great price.
Scout the Neighborhood
It’s important that you scout the neighborhood that you’re thinking about moving your office to. As mentioned earlier, retail companies should seek a location somewhere in which there’s a strong base of potential consumers. But every company—retail or not—should seek an office location that’s safe for employees. As a business owner, it’s your responsibility to make sure your employees are safe when they’re at work or when they’re closing up in the evening. Go online and do research on the neighborhood crime stats before you sign any lease.
You should also make sure your office location has an adequate amount of parking for all your employees. Small and medium-sized office buildings may not have very many reserved parking spaces, especially if you have a lot of employees crammed into your office. Make sure that if you can’t secure parking space for most of your employees, there will still be plenty of street parking or public transit accessibility. Or, you can set up a carpool system for the office.
Research Your Competitors
If you’re having a difficult time finding a good location, you should do some research on what kinds of offices your competitors are using. Since your competitors are in the same industry as you, they probably have a similar amount of staff and a similar budget—so the type of office space they have might also be ideal for you.