Category Archives: Office Leasing Tips

Hidden Costs of an DIY Office Lease Renewal

No Mistakes office lease renewalSo, you are getting near the end of your office lease and considering your options. One of those is to move to a new office location, but that is a lot of work and your current space fits you well. The other option is doing an office lease renewal at your current office lease. Many tenants thin that they can save money doing it themselves. We have found that office tenants typically make two major mistakes when renewal time comes around.

Common Office Lease Renewal Mistakes

The first is folding your cards by asking your landlord for a renewal proposal. By doing this you are indicating two things to your landlord, the first being that you are only considering a renewal and not exploring any competing space and the second is that you have not sought the assistance of a professional tenant representative to educate you on the market. Once a landlord thinks that you are committed to staying and will be going through the renewal process unrepresented, he can and will most likely make you an offer that is not in line with market rates and terms. Both of these pieces of leverage for the landlord can be eliminated by engaging a tenant representative specializing in commercial real estate. While a landlord may tell you this will raise the rental rate, this is simply incorrect, as brokerage fees are already factored into the lease rates and agreed to in advance with the landlords listing broker. Additionally, just letting your landlord know that you have retained representation tells him to
put his best foot forward or risk losing you as a tenant.

The second common mistake made by tenants, is not allowing enough time for the relocation/renewal process as a whole. Leaving too short of a time puts the advantage in the landlord’s hands, as your landlord will realize that you don’t have the time you need to relocate if you don’t like your renewal proposal. Tenants occupying less than 10,000 square feet should begin the process no less than one year out, for spaces larger than 10,000 square feet, up to two years of planning may be required.

You Don’t Need a Tenant Rep for an Office Lease  Renewal?

Here are some reasons why you may think you don’t need to engage a commercial real estate professional to represent you in your lease renewal:

“My landlord offered me a $.50 reduction in my lease rate”
While that sounds nice, it is actually quite common for market rates to drop more than the lease rate reduction offer by your landlord.

“My landlord is giving me a great lease rate; I spoke with my neighbor and someone in another building to confirm this”
Whether someone is getting a market deal is not only dependent upon the rate, there are a number of variables that contribute to getting a “market deal”. If you can’t answer the following questions, then you have left the door open for the landlord to take advantage:

  • What tenant improvement allowance should you be receiving on a
    lease renewal?
  • Do you know how much free-rent you should be receiving on a lease
    renewal?
  • What should be negotiated on your lease renewal relative to the
    operating expense costs?
  • What is fair for a tenant, in the current office market, with regards to
    parking charges, holdover provisions, relocation clauses, options to
    renew, and your ability to sublease?

You would never go to court without your attorney or through an IRS audit without your accountant. Why would your company want to make one of its top 3 financial commitments without having proper market knowledge and guidance? Especially when you can have it at
no cost to your company! Whatever you do, even if it isn’t us, make sure you choose and retain a commercial real estate tenant representative to represent you in your office lease decisions.

A guest blog post by our Local Denver Rep.

More office leasing tips

If you want to avoid making these mistakes, we can help with our network of local office tenant representatives, Contact us today for assistance. No obligation for our No Cost Service.

Save

Save

Save

The Best Kept Secret to Renting Office Space

Best Kept Secret renting office spaceThere is no doubt that renting office space is an extremely important business decision.  This will often be your clients’ very first impression of you and your company. It is also where your employees spend the majority of their time working. You want to make sure there are no problems. That is what the best kept secret to renting office space is all about.

What is the best kept secret to renting office space?

The best kept secret to renting office space is to make sure you rent one that utilizes a property management company.

Why?

Managing an office building requires considerable time and knowledge, two things many landlords may have in short supply. For instance, renting out space involves going over tenant applications, screening them, researching companies, collecting deposits, taking care of maintenance and ensuring rent is paid on time.  Why would this be your concern as a tenant? Making sure your neighbors pay on time, have good credit and keep their surroundings tidy ensures the consistency and security of your own office space.  Not to mention, your clients and business associates will likely judge you on the general impression and façade of your office building.

Peace of Mind

No matter where your landlord is in the world, you can rest assured that you will be taken care of if they have hired a property management company. This means you won’t have to to worry about calls not being returned for days, and you get peace of mind that someone is there to take of whatever may go wrong.

The little things include cleaning the carpet, painting the walls and conducting small repairs before a business moves in, allowing it to start its tenancy with you on the right foot. Big things tend to include a general aura of professionalism, for example, with prompt response rates that make you as a tenant happy.

Ongoing maintenance helps keep your office space in tiptop shape.

Of course, not all property management companies offer the same standard of service. It’s important to go over the list of services a company provides and check their reviews from the other tenants.

Many Benefits, Some You May Not Have Unexpected

In a nutshell, renting an office space run by a property management company provides security in the following areas:

  • Legal issues – this in your best as well as the owner of the building. It’s always good to have documents clearly stating whose responsibility certain matters are and the time frame in which they need to be taken care of.
  • Administrative details – Need leasing paperwork for your taxes or to change your payment method? Now you have options in a timely manner.
  • Maintenance – need I say more? The property management company is obligated to resolve issues in a timely manner.
  • Marketing – Make sure your building is occupied and you are in a bustling center of commerce.
  • Tenant screenings and tenant evictions – Your neighbors are held to a high standard that reflects on your reputation as a successful business owner.

The above features and much more enable you to direct your energy into your business, making more money and enjoying your me time away from work not wondering when the landlord will fix damage to the entry way of your office; keeping your office in pristine condition and likely end up saving you money and stress in the long run.

Guest Post by: Patrick Rogers is the Principal Property Manager for Asurent Property Management in Eugene Oregon.

Save

Save

Looking at Exciting New Office Buildings? Listen to Your Employees.

New office buildingsWhile many in the tech industry are trending toward exciting new office buildings that feature open plans and plenty of shared space, a recent article from TechRepublic warns that employee needs must be a factor in the design. In particular, the article notes, private spaces, quiet places, and smaller meeting areas need to be included.

According to a 2014 study from The Center for the Built Environment, workers who have their own office tend to be happier and less likely to take sick days, the article stated. An additional new study from Oxford Economics and Plantronics, involving 1,200 global employees and executives, found that millennial employees in particular found it hard to concentrate on work in a noisy environment.

Study Results

The results of these studies suggest that, although the trendy new open office plans encourage collaboration, balance is best when it comes to worker satisfaction. How to reach that balance? Providing a mix of open and closed spaces is a start. Additionally, the article suggests, the type of materials used in the design can also lend themselves to the creation of good working conditions. Hard surfaces can be replaced with more sound absorbent ones — such as carpet. Barriers between desks can be lowered to enable employees to see and interact with one another in a quieter fashion. Quiet spaces where phone calls can be taken or smaller meeting rooms can help.

While an office space isn’t going to meet every need of every individual employee, the article states, design should allow for flexibility in order to meet as many needs as possible and maximize productivity.

Are you searching for office space in new office buildings? We can help you find a work environment that suits the needs of your company and your employees. Contact us today for more information.

Save

Save

Worried About Security? 3 Office Space Leasing Tips You Can Implement Inexpensively

Security Office Space Leasing TipsThe majority of businesses in need of new office space focus on build-out allowances or ample parking for staff members and clients. That said, some companies have an added requirement: security. Office space leasing tips for law firms with unpopular clients, or other businesses that cater to a controversial clientele, focus on personal as well as corporate security measures. Even if your company typically does not have these problems, there are a few things you can do that won’t cost an arm and a leg that will improve security.

3 Office Space Leasing Tips You Can Implement Inexpensively

  1. Door and window safety checks. Undergoing this procedure is good advice for any business. Protect your company’s computers and office equipment from theft by retrofitting – if needed – doors. Add high-security locks, sheet steel, and electronic access panels. Re-key the office as soon as you move in or if a key is lost. If there are restrooms on your office’s floor, insist on having them locked with your company’s personnel being the only ones to have keys.
  2. Install a panic button. Your lobby is the weak spot in the setup. If your clientele is made up of controversial public figures or notorious criminals, it is not unusual to see members of the media visiting your reception area to ask for interviews or comments. Although your receptionist should be well-trained to handle these inquiries, have a panic button installed that signals the need for assistance. This situation may occur when protesters will not leave the premises when asked or threaten your staff members.
  3. Lights and cameras. Know what goes on outside of your building at all times. Usually, camera feeds lead to a guard’s desk inside the building’s lobby. Stop by on your way out to see whether anyone might be waiting for you or your clients.

By the way, these office space leasing tips not only assist law firms in need of heightened security, but they can also help with the prevention of workplace violence. If you are looking for secure office space, contact us today to learn more about how we can help at no cost to you.

Avoiding Office Leasing Mistakes

Office Leasing Mistakes OopsWith so many varied options for leasing office space, it can seem insurmountable to find just the right spot to meet your needs as well as those of your business!  However, a few simple steps can help you in avoiding office leasing mistakes and find the best office option for you and your employees so that everyone feels welcome, productive and happy. Here are 3 suggestions that will make a big difference in avoiding office leasing mistakes for you in your search for office space.

  1. Try using a broker instead of “going out on your own”.  Many smaller businesses attempt to seek future office space by way of classified ads, online postings, or even Craigslist.  Obviously, this can have negative consequences for numerous reasons, not least of which can include fraudulent rentals or misrepresented properties.  Hence, using a office space referral service or agent can prevent these problems before they begin. For brokers, there is no cost to you for their services.
  2. Plan for what is needed beforehand.  How much space is truly needed now and in 3 years?  How many employees do you have?  What kind of layout do you want? How many clients visit your office for in-person service?  Do you have conferences on premise, and if so, how many people generally attend them?  How much parking is available, and is it enough for employees as well as any visitors you might anticipate?  Giving thought to these scenarios can help you effectively predict not only how large or small of an office is necessary for your firm, but can also help you remain within budgetary constraints.
  3. Think ahead!  Much like apartment rentals, individuals or companies will oftentimes leave renewals or potential moves to the very last minute, which can severely limit their options for negotiating new leases in their existing offices or finding desirable new locations.  By preparing a few months ahead, you will then have enough time to weigh all your options, check in with your office space rental agent, negotiate a lease or a move, and keep your employees informed.  This approach is a win-win for everyone and helps to avoid unneeded stress!

Keeping things simple is a great way to go when considering new office space.  To help streamline your search for the perfect go-to place for your firm, contact us today to assist in finding your office oasis and  Avoiding Office Leasing Mistakes!

Office Leasing Tip: Parking Options

office leasing parkingAs a business owner considering your office leasing options, you probably focus most strongly on the interior of the space you are thinking of leasing, but it’s very important to consider your parking options as well. This is especially true in heavily populated commercial areas, where street parking is at a premium and many buildings have less than adequate space available for employees and customers.

Parking is an office leasing lease term that can make or break your commitment to a particular building. You must ask questions and negotiate the terms that work best for you. Although commercial office buildings are required to provide adequate parking, many older building don’t offer enough and even newer buildings may not accommodate enough vehicles during peak use periods.

Find out if parking is open or reserved. Designated spots guarantee that you and your employees will have parking available at any time. Inquire about customer parking as well. Guaranteed employee parking doesn’t include spaces for your visitors, but if you don’t have many, this may not be an issue for you.

Test the parking situation. Before you begin to negotiate the parking terms in the lease, check out how the parking works during rush hour (are there enough spots?), how easy and quick it is to reach your office suite from the lot or garage, and how secure the parking area is at various times.

Make sure that parking terms are included in the lease. Don’t rely on oral agreements or assurances, and be sure the terms are clear and detailed. Don’t accept a “parking is included” statement; specify how many spots, how much, whether they are open or reserved, arrangements for visitor parking, etc.

For many companies, parking options can be as important as the offices themselves. When considering your office leasing options, be sure your needs are covered in the lease, and that they are spelled out to your satisfaction. We can help at no cost to you. Contact us for more information.

Three Common Mistakes to Avoid When Leasing Office Space

Signing_AgreementLeasing office space is a significant investment for your business. This is why it is very important to make sure you avoid making mistakes that will cost you a lot of money. The following are 3 common mistakes made when leasing office space and how to avoid them.

Lack of planning. A lot of tenants do not know exactly what they need. Knowing the exact space you need is essential. You should have an architect that can do a space program for you and determine exactly what size and functions you need. Knowing the details of what you need will ultimately save you a lot of time and money in the long run.

Lack of representation. Hiring a tenant representative has many benefits. A broker has extensive knowledge regarding the ins and outs of the market and can negotiate for you. They can also use their knowledge and experience to narrow the buildings down that they believe would be best for your business. Hiring a tenant representative can prevent you from leasing a space that you will ultimately decide to leave a few months down the road.

One of the great benefits of engaging a tenant rep is that, while they work for you, their services are free. Just like in residential real estate, their fees are paid by the owner of the building. You get representation, but do not have to pay for it.

Find out more about Tenant Representatives

Not enough time. It is common for tenants to underestimate the amount of time it takes to renew a lease or move. Negotiating your deal could take anywhere from 6-12 months, depending on how much space you have and what tenant improvements are needed. By planning ahead and creating deadlines, you can avoid making this mistake.

If you value your time and money, you cannot afford to make these mistakes when leasing office space. Contact us for more information about how to avoid mistakes when leasing office space.

 

5 Office Space Leasing Tips for Small Business Tenants

Helpful Office Space Leasing TipsWhether you have 10 or 100 employees, as a small business owner you know that finding the right space for your company is crucial for its continued success. There are many things to consider. That is where a good tenant rep comes in. Making sure you don’t miss anything crucial. Among those considerations there are five office space leasing tips that the professionals have used successfully for years; now you can, too.

5 Office Space Leasing Tips

  1. Plan for the space you need next year. Look back at the growth history of your company. There should be a consistent trajectory that shows annual expansion. Lease a space for the growth benchmark that you anticipate meeting in a year from now. Doing so lets you grow into the space and prevents from busting at the seams if you grow faster than expected.
  2. Pick a location with a millennial workforce in mind. It is expected that millennials will account for over 45% of the workforce by 2020. You better plan your office space to meet their needs. This group likes to walk to nearby venues, rely on public transportation and prefers an urban setting that makes the balance between work and life an easy one. Following on its heels is Generation Z, which is expected to demand a similar work environment.
  3. Look at a space from the customer’s point of view. When the proposed office is of sufficient size and near the amenities that your workers like, consider how your customers feel about it. An established clientele with a high loyalty quotient may follow you into the boonies, but finding new customers willing to travel there is unlikely. Be close to major transportation hubs and offer ample parking.
  4. Leverage your brand. Marketers define your brand as the corporate identity of your business. If you are an innovative software developer, your office should be a mix of glass, acrylic, metal and modernism. Dark wood, shag carpeting or tired floor plans are not what you are looking for. Work with an expert tenant representative who can help you find a space that bespeaks your brand.
  5. Negotiate a generous build-out allowance. When the space needs a few tweaks and some larger changes to take on the flexible workplace characteristics you envision, find out if your property owner will foot the bill or at least let you amortize the cost as additional rent. Using a build-out allowance saves you money. Negotiating the right amount calls for business savvy and a good understanding of what competing property managers offer.

Of course, these office space leasing tips only scratch the surface. Our local office tenant reps have many more Office Space Leasing Tips they use to help ensure you not only get the best deal possible on the right office space for your business, but also avoid costly mistakes.

Contact us today to discuss your business’ office needs and the time frame for your next move.

Top 5 Office Space Leasing Tips to Maximize Work-Life Integration

Top 5In the past, the only notion of a home life that the employee would bring to work was a houseplant and a photo of the spouse. Back in those days, office space leasing tips were dominated with cost per square foot calculations and private office allocation. Yet today’s Millennials want nothing to do with this kind of work environment.

This segment of the population has different values than those of the generations that came before it. Attracting and retaining quality workers from this generation calls for at least five leasing tips that foster work-life integration.

  1. Flexible workstations. The advance of wireless technology now makes it possible to work from home, the coffee shop or the park. Do not keep workers tethered to desks with PCs but enable them to enjoy flexible workdays and workstations.
  2. Enhanced interactivity. The conference room with its formal setting is no longer the space you should look for. Instead, opt for a large, open space within the office that you can transform into impromptu meeting areas for teams or team members.
  3. Access to public transportation. While you still want to have access to a parking garage or lot, consider that Millennials favor public transportation. In fact, the decision of whether or not to accept an employment offer from your company may hinge on the availability of nearby transit routes.
  4. Walkability. How pedestrian-friendly is the area right around your office building? Business parks are out; finding office space in the heart of downtown, near amenities and within easy walking distance of entertainment venues is now in. Consider that your employees frequently do not return home after work but might meet up with friends.
  5. Modern amenities. Your building should feature modern amenities. On-site restaurants, coffee shops or even a gym would be ideal. Other attractive amenities include spas, business services kiosks and the unusual. For example, the management team of the BECO Towers complex follows a tenant-centered approach and provides outdoor nature lounges and bike rentals.

If this collection of office space leasing tips has inspired you to look around for new digs, contact us for assistance to find the hottest properties at the best possible prices.

A Flexible Workplace Encourages Creativity, Teamwork and Problem Solving

Flexible Workplace“It is so difficult these days to find good help,” used to be an adage that managers would utter with a sigh. Yet what happens if it is not the quality of the employee but the mediocrity of the workplace that results in the status quo? In response to this question, the creation of the flexible workplace now seeks to tap into the potential and talent of each employee.

Understanding the Breadth of Flexibility

You choose how flexible you want your business to be. A flexible workplace is not an all or nothing decision. If telecommuting full or part-time is a viable option, employees have an easier time balancing work and life. Doing so results in the formation of a partnership with your workers rather than a traditional employee-employer relationship. The Alfred P. Sloan Foundation cites data that attributes workplace flexibility to a workforce that exceeds expectations.

Employees like it and will work  harder and be more engaged to using all their skills and talents to maintain a flexible Workplace. You can choose to offer part-time or full-time flexibility depending on your preferences. Another option is a schedule that allows for flexible start and end times as well as condensed workweeks. You decide what works for you. Start out small then grow the program as you see success.

Realizing the Savings

Since you are no longer limited to a local labor force, you now have the option of actively recruiting employees based on talent. With today’s technology is does not matter where they reside. Whether it is in your area or across the country, these remote professionals easily add value to your organization. Of course, you also save money in the process.

  • Development costs. When hiring qualified workers who do not need to be trained in the basics, you save money on the training process.
  • Office costs. From IT savings over office supplies to office space, you save money because you do not have to equip an office or cubicle for every worker. Those who come into the office part-time or on staggered schedules may share work spaces.
  • Spatial restructuring. Leasing a new office space with the creation of co-working areas and shared office spaces in mind increases your likelihood of finding suitable accommodations in business hubs. Working with a tenant representative to evaluate potential savings is an excellent first step and may help to overcome objections from members of the management team.

Realizing the Benefits to You

In addition to pleasing employees, a flexible workplace is also an agile one. With no long term commitment to house remote employees, or even if you use some sort of office hotel program to schedule employee time in the office, you will have the flexibility to grow or contract as business need dictate. It is a win-win.

Contact us today to get help in finding a flexible workplace for your company.