Category Archives: Office Space

7 Ways Landlords Qualify Commercial Tenants

How To Find Offices To Rent In Your AreaPeople who invest in property often turn to rentals for a steady income stream. However, it is often challenging to weed out unfavorable commercial tenants during the screening process. Commercial landlords who lease office space are no exception.

 If you are one of them, you must be very particular in ensuring that you are choosing the right tenant. You would not want to end up with a high tenant turnover rate, which can affect your annual profits. But how do you screen potential tenants and make sure they are meeting your qualifications?

Unlike ordinary property rentals, there is so much at stake in commercial leasing and renting. Property owners need to be prudent in giving out information unless you are fairly certain who you are talking to and what they are looking for in a commercial property.

If you are a tenant looking for office space, you need to know what landlords consider when approving new commercial tenants. From a lndlords point of view, here is what they usually do.

Conduct a Prescreening

Often considered a time-consuming process, tenant prescreening can usher in a wealth of benefits in the long run if done right. For one, it is one of the best ways to eliminate prospects that do not meet your set criteria. If you lay down prescreening requirements, you set expectations early on in the process, which means you will only attract high-quality tenants.

You can start by outlining your prescreening conditions in your rental listing. As the first point of contact between you and thousands of other tenants, rental listings generate interest and help ensure that the tenant screening process goes smoothly by weeding out unqualified leads. For example, you include a statement that encapsulates your condition, detailing how much they would pay upfront for the screening process and getting their approval for completing the application form and subjecting them to a background check.

It is also essential to set out a couple of prescreening questions. This can range from who they are and who will guarantee the lease to the nature of their business and who their target customers are.

Verify The Business and Income

Another crucial step in qualifying your tenants is to ensure that they have a healthy business and pay rent months down the road. That is why you need to know what kind of business they have and how well it is earning.

As a landlord, you may require them to submit bank references, personal and corporate financial statements, and a copy of their business plan. Just bear in mind that other documents you can require might depend on the type of business they are running. A corporate entity, for example, might need to provide you with a certificate of incorporation, director names, and many more. On the other hand, a limited liability company might have to give the names of their current members and managers, articles of organization, and certificate of filing, among many others.

Check Their Creditworthiness

Tenants must also establish their creditworthiness. This will ensure that they will pay their rent on time and uphold any lease obligations you both agree upon throughout the lease term. Some of the factors you need to consider when checking their creditworthiness include their financial records, rental history, payment track record, industry assessment, and tenant attitude.

You might need to delve into their income statement, balance sheet, and income tax returns that will give you a solid picture of their financial standing.

Arrange for a Background Check

A background check is a handy tool for checking someone’s character, credibility, or even financial stability. If you want to ensure that the potential tenants of your commercial property are to be trusted, then conducting a background check is only logical.

Some of the information you will uncover in the process include address verification bankruptcies, identity verifications, criminal convictions, credit history, and other significant details that will help you decide whether they are worth leasing your space to. When it comes to checking criminal record history, you must find a reliable company for this kind of background check as it can be very tricky.

Just keep in mind that there are parts of a background investigation where consent is required, so you must include this condition in the prescreening process. Hence, your potential tenants are aware, and it will be easier to ask for their consent when necessary.

Rental History Reference Checks

If the business of a potential tenant is not new, and they are moving from somewhere else, it is only sensible that you will verify their rental history. Ask essential questions like the property’s address that they previously leased, the length of tenancy, the amount of the monthly rental, and their reason for leaving. It is also vital that you find out if they have paid their rent consistently and on time.

Know the Tenants’ Needs

While you have already set out your requirements and expectations, you must also be privy to what the potential tenants need. There is no point in wasting your time on a lead who has no idea about what they need. It can be utility needs, zoning, and other details that will affect the leased space. This will help you avoid complicated situations later on when tenants start negotiating for nonnegotiable items on the lease terms.

Set a Proper Time Frame

You would want to avoid your space being vacant for too long. After all, you are paying for the upkeep of your property. Regular income is needed to maintain the place. To ensure you and the potential tenants are on the same page and pace, you must communicate specific time frames. They should be able to move in quickly once everything is settled. You can always weed out those who are unsure.

 Wrapping It Up

The qualification process for commercial tenants is not something that can be rushed. It entails the landlord evaluation a lot of considerations that are important for the property’s safety and long-term benefits. Landlords are looking to ensure that they have quality tenants and mitigate risks. Tenants need to understand the hoops landlords will likely require them to jump through in order to ensure a smooth leasing process.

Having a tenant rep on your side can help the process go as smoothly as possible. If you are looking for office space, we can help with our national network of top tenant reps. Contact us today so we can show you how we can help you find the right office at the best price. No Obligation!

 

How to Easily Transition Employees Back to the Office

Back to the OfficeYou’re not alone if you’re worried about how your team will handle the move back tothe office  to whatever sort of in-person work your company plans. Most employees, you’ve already seen, don’t want to go back to whatever normal looked like before the outbreak.

According to a recent Harvard Business School survey of 1,500 employees, 81 percent of them either don’t want to come back to the office or prefer a hybrid work paradigm. Of them, 27 percent want to work from home full-time, while 61 percent want to work from home two to three days a week. Only 18 percent want to return to full-time in-person work.

While those percentages may vary depending on your team, it’s safe to assume that the vast majority of your employees will be disappointed when your company reveals its plans for a return to work.

So, how can you keep your staff motivated and engaged during a corporate transition as a leader? Of course, part of that will be dictated by factors outside your control, such as the level of flexibility provided by your employer.

Employees will be less resistant to the move back to the office if they have greater control over their work structure. Setting aside the things you can’t control, there are a few things you can do to make the transition to whatever your company’s version of “next” looks like easier for everyone.

1. Be open without appearing to be a victim

When you can’t provide employees with the level of flexibility they expect, listen to their concerns and disappointments with empathy. Make as much information regarding the organization’s logic for the policies in place as possible.

Never say something like, “I’m sorry, but it’s out of my control,” as this shows weakness and defensiveness, which will likely irritate them even more. Early on, bring up any issues you have and convey them regularly.

People will assume you know more about new regulations and protocols than you do, and you may be asked questions for which you have no satisfactory answer. Learning to respond honestly will be crucial to demonstrating excellent leadership.

Inform them ahead of time about any impending changes you learn about, and let them know what you’re doing to keep them informed. You may help ensure that others’ expectations don’t become roadblocks in an already difficult shift by successfully managing their expectations.

2. Documentation

There will almost certainly be a lot to keep staff up to date on when they return to work. In reaction to lost revenue, new office regulations regarding health and hygiene may have been created, new programs may have been implemented, and bonuses and incentives may have been updated.

Each and every returning employee should be given documentation on any office changes, and if there are a lot, you might want to prepare a packet and keep it on each person’s desk. Even if they are receiving digital pay statements, it is a good idea to include a YTD paystub in the package. YTD stands for year to date. This will help the individual to reorient themselves to the new normal and assess their personal progress so far this year and make it easier for them to create a pay stub.

3. Involve the team in balancing the requirements of individuals and the collective.

If you have some control over how WFH regulations are implemented on your team, you’ll need to figure out how to apply those principles to specific situations without being unjust to others. After being apart for so long, it’s critical to reestablish cohesion, so you don’t want to start with some people feeling resentful of the flexibility you provide others but not them.

Engage your staff in determining how to best use the discretion you’ve been given wherever possible. Allow each member to voice their requirements and preferences, and then charge the team with balancing them within the parameters set. Single parents, for example, may have different flexibility requirements than those caring for aging parents. When it is their decision to do so, people will be more flexible, even sacrificing, for the sake of the team.

Encourage the team to develop new work practices that everyone follows for both where and when work is done. Ensure that all meetings, for example, have video links so that individuals working from home can participate equally.

Set specific work hours, such as 11:00 a.m. to 2:00 p.m. ET, during which everyone must be available online, as well as weekend boundaries during which everyone is expected to be offline. If you’re having a large meeting, have everyone attend from their computer, whether they’re at home or at work, so no one feels left out.

People will be significantly more dedicated to the solutions they help build, and the creativity they demonstrate may energize and generate excitement for the transition, alleviating whatever anxiety they may be feeling.

4. Allow people to grieve in their own time.

Regardless of the level of flexibility you provide, the transfer from WFH may signify more than just a loss of control over their time for individuals. Some folks were bereaved by Covid-19 but never had the opportunity to say their final goodbyes. Others renewed their relationships with their spouses and reached new levels of intimacy with their children.

Others have created personal routines that will be interrupted as a result of the changes. Allow individuals to grieve the loss of whatever this past season has meant for them, no matter how good “next” may be. Some people may appear to be unusually silent. Others are a little terse.

Some people may become teary-eyed when a coworker recalls their family. If you give folks the opportunity to let go of the last 18 months, they’ll be more able to embrace the new normal you’re encouraging them to help build.

5. Bring all of the pandemic stories together in one place.

While the pandemic’s horrors cannot be overstated, there were some unexpected benefits and lessons for many. As dinner tables functioned as classrooms and workplaces, there were WFH blunders with video cameras and kitchen pandemonium.

Unexpected revelations of personal resilience and inventiveness, as well as revelations of personal limitations, necessitated the development of self-compassion. One of the organizations with which I work is throwing a “return-to-next” reentry party, at which each team member will build a digital scrapbook of their favorite pandemic experiences.

You can assist your team see each other in a new perspective by sharing aspects of the past 18 months that they encountered while separated. We will not be the same people we were 18 months ago. Creating a unique experience to uncover who you each became will renew your team’s relationships while reinvigorating your excitement for the future.

6. Be a source of happiness.

Creating a sense of lightheartedness for your team is one of the finest methods to alleviate any angst they may be experiencing. There are certain aspects of working life that individuals miss: routines that your team liked, festivities that were halted, and opportunities to go off camera and feel less isolated.

According to a PwC report from June 2020, 50% of employees believe that teamwork and relationship building are better in person. Assist folks in seeing how you’ll be able to reestablish those things once everyone has returned. Humor, when utilized properly, may be very beneficial in bringing delight to others.

Share your own tales of WFH mayhem to encourage others to do the same. This is an especially opportune opportunity for you, as the team’s leader, to demonstrate servanthood by doing all you can to personally ease the transition for team members who may find it tough. Demonstrating true support today will strengthen the team’s loyalty and commitment to one another, as well as to your performance goals for the year. This way you mill some high income skills as a team leader.

If the move to WFH wasn’t difficult enough, returning to the office could be even more challenging. Our minds will be searching for familiar routines to “return” to, but they will not exist. Our brains will have to devote extra energy to adjust on the go if this happens.

This transition will encourage us all to bring our best selves back to work and demonstrate how the pandemic has strengthened us. Knowing this, your job as the team’s leader is critical in assisting people in navigating this with optimism, kindness, and patience in order to ensure that those are the versions that come up.

And if you are looking for an office for your employees to return to, we can help! Our local reps know the market, know the landlords and know who takes care of their buildings. Contact us if we can help! No obligation.

 

How to Encourage Employees to Return to the Office

Return to the OfficeThanks to the COVID-19 pandemic that caused most businesses to adopt remote working, most employees are reluctant to come back to the office. Some of the reasons for the reluctance include the flexibility and convenience of working from home and safety concerns. Therefore, if you plan on reopening your offices, you need to find a balance between the company’s needs and those of your workers to ensure a smooth transition. Here are a few tips that you can use to encourage employees to return to the office.

1. Employee Safety

One of the biggest challenges hindering employees to return to office is safety and health concerns. As the HR or management, you need to assure your staff that they can work from the office without putting their health at risk. To do this, put in place safety measures and policies to safeguard employee physical and mental health.

Some of the best practices to implement at the office include providing protective equipment like masks, thorough workplace sanitization, social distancing, and testing. As the management, ensure you communicate to your staff about how you intend to make the workplace safe. Doing so inspires trust and confidence from employees and makes coming back to the office less scary.

2. Have a Flexible Back-to-Office Strategy

Employees will be more receptive to the idea of coming back to the office when they are under no pressure to report to work. Therefore, come up with flexible guidelines on how your staff can get back to the office. You can decide to allow employees to work from the office for a few days of the week and then work remotely for the remaining days.

The best way to manage office re-entry is to involve the staff when coming up with the ground rules for getting back to work. Doing so not only makes them feel included and valued, but it also makes the whole exercise less pushy. By gradually reintroducing your staff back to the office, you ease employee anxiety and make it easy for them to acclimatize to the new working environment.

3. Organize Training to Upskill Employees

Most employees value career development and will be more excited coming back to work knowing they have opportunities to upskill and boost their financial security. As such, employee training programs at the workplace is an excellent incentive to encourage employees to get back to the office.  Besides fostering personal and professional development through upskilling, employee training programs allow your staff to find mentors.

While job-related upskilling courses such as coding classes for your IT team are great motivators, consider soft skills such as problem-solving and team building. It is advisable to make the training programs long-term to promote employee motivation and upward mobility.

4. Adapt Your Office Space to Match Employee Needs

One of the keys to achieving a successful employee return to the office is understanding that their needs may have changed when they were away. Some employees may be motivated to come to the office by the possibility of socializing, while others require a quiet working environment without the distractions of working from home. As such, you should adapt your workspaces to accommodate the different needs of your team and offer personalized experiences at work.

Consult your employees before opening up your offices on what they need so you can prepare adequately to meet their expectations. You can do this by sending out surveys and questionnaires to help you consider everyone when reimagining your office spaces. Your employees will be eager to get back to the office once they know their individual needs are well taken care of, and they can feel at home working from the office workspaces.

5. Promote Personal Connections among Employees

Reports show that 73% of employees working from home miss socializing with their colleagues. To encourage your staff to get back to working from the office, you need to capitalize on the need for human connection. You can do this by creating working spaces that encourage personal interactions and introducing activities requiring your staff to come together.

Since the office setup may limit the necessary connection your employees need, come up with creative and fun activities outside work hours. These include community service, going for picnics, scheduling alfresco lunches once in a while, and organizing games. By incorporating fun activities in your return-to-the-office strategy, you get to leverage the fear of missing out (FOMO) on those who are reluctant to come back to the office.

The Bottom Line

How you handle your company’s transition from remote to office working can make or break your employees’ morale, affecting your business productivity in the long run. While there isn’t a one-size-fits-all solution, the above tips can help encourage your employees to get back to the office. By listening to your employee’s needs and striving to provide them with the ideal working environment, you can achieve a successful transition back to the office.

Looking for an office for your employees to return to? Many companies had the fortune of getting out of their leases during the pandemic. Our local reps know the market, know the landlord and know what takes care of their buildings. Contact us if we can help! No obligation.

8 Tips To Help You Better Organize Your Office

If you work in an office, there is a good chance that your desk has become cluttered with papers, pens, and other items. This can be problematic because it may lead to stress and make it difficult to find what you are looking for when you need it. Organize your office to be more productive.

Luckily, there are a few ways that you can better organize your office so that everything stays neat. In this post, we will discuss eight tips to help keep your office organized!

Tidy Up Your Desk Every Day

If you work in an office, the chances are that a lot is going on around you. The constant movement of people can make it easy to ignore the messiness of your own space. This will lead to stress and frustration, which are not good for anyone! Ensure to tidy up your workspace at least once per day so that things don’t get out of hand. You can use a plastic banding machine for the office to bind items together which helps to declutter and make your office tidy. It’s also important that all items have a place where they belong – this includes pens and other stationery items. Clean off the top of desks regularly.

It is important not to let papers and other items accumulate on the top of desks. This will increase clutter, making it difficult for people to find what they are looking for when they need it. It’s also a good idea to clean off your desk every day so you don’t have old coffee cups sitting there as well!

Rearrange Your Office

Organizing your office is not just about sorting through things and throwing away anything you don’t need. Sometimes, it can also be helpful to redesign your co-working space or rearrange where certain items are located so that they’re easier for people to find when they need them.

For example: if a person always grabs their phone charger from the same place every day, it might make sense to have chargers stored in drawers or lockboxes on each desk instead of having one centralized location across an entire floor!

Develop a Filing System

If you have many papers and other items that need to be filed away, develop your system for where things should go. For example, if all invoices are stored in one cabinet in alphabetical order by company name, then it would make sense to store them this way on your desk as well!

This will help keep everything neat and organized so that people can easily find what they’re looking for when they need it without having to search through every single drawer or file cabinet themselves.

Organize Your Desktop

If you want to organize your office, you need to keep your desk organized. It might be helpful to store things like notebooks, pens, and other stationery items in drawers or containers rather than sitting out where they can get knocked over when someone walks by. Do not place anything on your keyboard because this will make the keys harder to press, leading to frustration while typing!

Keep an eye out next time you’re at a conference for how neatly some offices are set up: something is satisfying about walking into an office space with everything neat! When we take care of our own spaces – whether it’s our desks at work or our homes – we have a better sense of control over the chaos that comes with being busy.

Time Management Tips

If you have a hard time managing your time, consider giving yourself more “deadlines” so that there is a goal to work towards. For example: if you need to finish three tasks by the end of the day but can’t seem to get them done before lunchtime rolls around, it might be helpful for you to give yourself specific deadlines throughout the morning instead.

To-do lists are also great because they make sure we do not forget anything. If you find that these don’t work for you or feel overwhelmed with all of the different items on them, try breaking down your list into smaller parts.

Organize Digitally

It’s also important to keep your digital workspace organized, especially if you work remotely. You might want to create a specific folder on your computer for any projects currently in progress and store other files into sub-folders.

This will make it easier for people who come (to) visit your office space or remote location to find what they’re looking for without having to spend hours scrolling through all of the different documents on your desktop!

Communicate on Schedule

If you correspond by email, make sure that your emails follow a specific schedule so that people know when they should expect to hear back from you. This will help alleviate any frustrations or misunderstandings since everyone knows what is going on and has some idea of where things stand at all times.

It might also be helpful to reply with a timestamp at the end of your email so that people know when it was sent or received. This can help someone who is on the go and needs to get back to you as soon as possible, so they don’t have to wait around for an answer!

Ritualize Your Day

If you find that your day is always a rush and it’s hard to get everything done, then try ritualizing what time of the day you should complete each task. For example: if most days are hectic because there are so many meetings, then maybe schedule your morning hours for answering emails or making phone calls while in the evening hours focus on tasks like writing blog posts or creating graphics!

This will help give some structure to your workday so that things don’t seem disorganized and overwhelming when you’re juggling many things at once!

Now that you’ve learned all of these tips to organize your office, it is time to put them into action. Start by purging your workspace and tidying up your desk every day. Next, rearrange the office furniture, so everything has a place. Develop an organizational system for paper filing and digital files on your computer desktop as well as in folders on your laptop or phone. Make sure to schedule blocks of time for each task you need to accomplish and stick with those times daily or weekly! When scheduling appointments, meetings, and events, make sure they are written down somewhere (paper planner, online calendar) so there is no confusion about what needs to be done when. Finally, try incorporating some rituals like reading emails at the same time every day.

And if you are looking for a new office where you can re organize your office, we can help. Contact us today so we can show you how we can help you find the right office at the best price. No Obligation!

What to Know Before Hiring a Commercial Property Manager

Commercial Property ManagerIf you’re just getting into real estate investment or you purchased an office building to house your business, you’re probably thinking about whether or not you should seek out a commercial property manager. We’ll save you some time: yes, you should hire a property manager. Real estate investors large and small, and at every level of experience, will benefit from hiring a property manager. There are managers and management styles to suit every possible portfolio, from single properties to diverse, expansive real estate empires.

Efficient “lone wolf” managers, locally focused management firms, and large, resourceful management firms with projection power all have something unique to offer, and the type of manager you choose will depend on your specific needs and the nature of your portfolio. However, like in any marketplace, there’s more underneath the surface; before you deal with a new property manager, you should make sure to vet them properly. Doing your due diligence upfront will spare you the headache of dealing with bad management. According to Utopia Management, the industry nationwide has some stellar management teams, but sadly it is also rife with inexperienced, ineffective property managers. It’s a fairly easy career to start, which tends to attract people that may not have the level of commitment and business acumen that is required to maximize ROI and streamline operations. Pete Evering of Utopia shares with us these ways to sort out your options and trust your investment to a smart, effective property management firm.

1. Zero In on Your Needs

Before you search for a potential manager, take stock of what exactly you require and expect from your management. For example, a single family home and a mixed portfolio of multifamily residential and commercial properties will have acutely different needs, most obviously concerning the number of staff necessary for general upkeep and the resources available to them. If you have properties in different, disconnected locales, a large-scale firm with a presence in different counties or states is ideal.

In general, you’ll want to work with only one manager or management firm that can service all of your properties. Small-time investors may want to save money by going with an efficient, solo manager, but depending on your situation, your needs may extend beyond the physical act of management and into the realms of marketing and advertising, meaning you’ll want to choose someone able to properly advertise vacant rental units and fill them promptly. Many property managers also assume the duties of tenant interaction, including processing applications, background checks, and leases. For this reason, many proactive landlords opt for a fully staffed firm.

2. Inquire About Experience

A manager can claim expertise in several subfields of property management, but talk is cheap. Before signing with a manager, get a good idea of their management experience. In any field, there’s a debate between those who prize freshness and innovation over cooked-to-death tradition and those who trust old wisdom more than they trust untested possibility. In general, however, you should choose management that can display a long history of experience, having dealt with changes in the real estate market over decades and adjusted accordingly. Don’t forget: if a management firm is old, that means they’ve been doing something right.

Of course, management experience itself isn’t universal. A firm specializing in walkup apartments, with few if any commercial properties in their management history, is obviously not an ideal candidate to market and manage a small armada of retail spaces. Having no precisely relevant management experience shouldn’t automatically disqualify a manager, but you should consider looking elsewhere until you find someone whose clients typically resemble yourself.

3. Ask How They Reduce Vacancy Rates

This is a magic bullet question that will highlight immediately how savvy the agency or manager is.  Listen for answers that discuss:

  • Highly visible marketing to attract more tenants, including digital and signage
  • Attractive listings with professional photography
  • 7 days a week showing availability
  • Strong screening to identify longer term reliable tenants
  • Tenant retention strategies, including being responsive to tenants needs and ability to pay rent online
  • In house maintenance teams that are typically more responsive (and save you money)
  • Market familiarity to price appropriately
  • Eviction protection programs, which function similar to insurance

It’s a giant red flag if they gloss over this topic, or worse if they imply vacancy rates are out of their control.

4. Investigate Their Reputation

This should come as second nature to us in the digital age: before patronizing a new restaurant, specialty shop, or any other business, we habitually look for the lowdown on its reputation and quality. Usually, that involves a Google search, some number of stars, and written reviews.

For property managers, you’ll have to dig a little deeper. Many management firms receive most of their online feedback, such as what you’ll find on a Google business profile, from tenants, not landlords. Because of the nature of tenant and management relations, most of these tenant reviews will be complaints, and many of them will be outright hostile. This doesn’t mean an online quality score is useless — after all, as a landlord, you should desire that your tenants are satisfied and happy — but it does mean you should do some more digging to get a good idea of a manager’s business reputation with their clients.

If you have peers or acquaintances involved in real estate investment, ask for their opinions. See who they use, and ask what they think of your prospective manager. Even if they’ve never worked together, your friends may have heard something, and if it’s the bad kind of something, they’ll probably be able to recommend someone better.

5. Are They Insured?

All the relevant experience and positive recommendations in the world won’t save you from unforeseen circumstances. No matter the size of your property manager, it’s paramount they’re armed with a full risk management arsenal that can limit the damage done by bad actors and general negligence.

Let’s start with general liability insurance, an essential type of business insurance. This covers the firm in the event a tenant is injured, or property is damaged due to employee negligence. In addition, the commercial property managers at Buttonwood advise that your management firm should be covered by a fidelity bond in case of purposeful theft or fraud committed by its employees.

Professional liability insurance will cover losses due to damaging professional advice and other abstract types of professional negligence, essentially filling the liability holes left unfilled by a general liability insurance policy. To cover all bases, forgery and alteration insurance will protect against the financial fallout from fraudulent or altered checks and other payment methods.

6. Understand the Fee Structure

Simply put, you should know how much something costs before you agree to buy it. Most management firms don’t lead with their asking price and fees, so ask a prospective property manager to plainly describe their fee structure before hopping aboard.

Typically, manager fees take one of three forms:

  • Flat Fee

The flat fee is the same amount every month, regardless of actual cost of operations. A manager will usually set this amount based on reasonable expectations of cost.

  • Percentage of Revenue

This fee structure extracts a percentage of your rental property’s gross revenue. This includes not only rent, but also bill-backs for utility overuse and other costs incurred by tenants.

  • Hybrid

When managers are unwilling to commit to either a flat fee or gross percentage, they will often institute a hybrid fee model in which gross revenue percentage and a flat fee are compared, with the greater of the two selected.

If you are interested in finding an office building to purchase either for your business or as an investment, we have top local commercial real estate agents throughout the US and Canada who can help. They will represent you and make sure you avoid any costly mistakes. Contact us today for more information.

7 Key Factors When Choosing A New Office Space

Your office space isn’t just any other space–it’s the center of innovative ideas and the collective effort of your whole team. That being said, you should always be extra prudent when choosing a new office space. 

Whether relocating or starting up, here are several things to consider when choosing a new office space for your company:

Location

The first item to tick off your priority list is the office’s location. Choose a location that’s easy to access, not only for you but also for your employees. Ideally, the office space should be accessible for your clients, partners, and suppliers. Also, consider its proximity to necessities such as public transportation, restaurants and other amenities.

Parking is also another factor to consider when choosing the location. Is there adequate parking for both your employees and customers? You don’t want your customers getting frustrated because they couldn’t find a parking space. Downtown locations generally have very limited parking so it is important to decide how much parking you will need.

Infrastructure

Infrastructure involves several aspects, not just the internet connection. Of course, you want an office space that has reliable connectivity, especially since, nowadays, a business may find it difficult to function without an internet connection. But also take into consideration other aspects of infrastructure like telephone connections and postal services.

 If you’re planning to buy a property and turn it into an office space, you need to ensure that the infrastructure is good, especially the availability of good Internet access, electrical, heating and cooling (HVAC), and plumbing systems. If you are planning major renovations for a rehab, check out what is in stock at EasyMerchant.

Your Clients And Other Stakeholders

If you’re moving to a new office, you need to consider if your clients and other stakeholders will find it easy to access the new office. If you’ve been operating in your old office for some time, they’ve undoubtably acquired familiarity with the location and everything around it. 

Tasks And Workforce Amenities

Amenities are also an important consideration in determining how comfortable your team will be in the new office. Are there enough amenities for the whole workforce to use and enjoy? An example would be conference facilities that can accommodate the whole team whenever you need to hold a company-wide meeting. 

If you’re renting, there are important amenities that should be present in the building like shared meeting areas and daycare centers. Other amenities that may be considered are fitness centers, a lounge, cafes, and even outdoor spaces for tenants. 

These amenities will ensure that your organization remains productive at work, and, most importantly, encourage employees to come to the office more frequently, especially if you are implementing an agile workplace with remote work.

Scalability

Scalability means the capacity of your office space to be changed or modified either by size or by scale. Your new office space needs to be flexible enough to accommodate the size of your workforce and it should also have enough room to grow your team. 

With scalable office space, you don’t need to worry about having to relocate again just because the space can no longer accommodate your growing company.

Competition

While the office usually needs to be situated in a place where business is centralized, you also need to consider if there are competitors in your prospective area. Make sure and do some research to find out if there will be any competitors that would impact your business nearby.

Price

Whether you’re renting or buying the whole property, you need to know if the asking price is fairly competitive for its location and amenities. If the landlord is not providing tenant improvements, an allowance for them or if you’ll need to do any remodeling and or reconstruction yourself, make sure the price for such is reflected in the price. It is important to make sure you know what it is going to cost prior to signing a lease. You don’t want any nasty surprises after you are committed to a long term agreement.

Conclusion

A productive office space isn’t only for your team’s benefits, but also for the image of your company. Choosing a new office isn’t a walk in the park, but with the help of the tips provided, you have a few of the most important things to consider when choosing a new office space. Needless to say, we recommend you obtain the services of a qualified tenant rep to help you in acquiring your office space. They do this on a day-to-day basis and know what needs to be considered to make sure you get the right space at the best price. We have over 600 local tenant reps to assist you. Contact us today to get in touch with one. No obligation to inquire. You will be glad you did.

 

3 Rookie Mistakes to Avoid When Buying an Office Seat Cushion

Sync Your Home Office With Your Main OfficeAre you thinking of getting a cushioned seat for your office chair? According to a recent poll of 51,869 people, persons aged 20 and up spent an average of 6.4 hours per day sitting, while those aged 12 to 19 spent 8.2 hours per day sitting. In addition to considering the ergonomics of a chair, you should also consider a seat cushion. A paradox of choice arises from the large number of office seat cushions that all appear to be the same. Choosing a cushioned seat for your office chair isn’t rocket science, but it does require some research. Now that you know how important it is to select your cushion seat carefully, it is recommended that you should avoid the following blunders.

  • Choosing the Wrong Colors and Material

Horrible aesthetic decisions won’t make you sick, but they could make you feel abandoned. Perhaps the upholstery has a strange, off-kilter feel to it, or the color is unattractive to your workstation. These options will not make your seat cushion uncomfortable, but they may make you less want to sit. Evaluate your desk and sitting situation to avoid this difficulty. It’s a good idea to make a checklist before going shopping for a seat cushion so you can filter out the ones that aren’t right from the ones that are.

  • Preparation

When it comes to choosing the right office seat cushion for your chair, you’ll need to go through a lengthy decision-making process. However, once you’ve decided on the right cushion, don’t make the mistake of ordering it from sites such as Amazon and other retailers without carefully considering your current work setup and the exact measurements of the seat cushion you’re about to buy.

What is the width of the chair? How will the seat cushion fit in your workplace chair, for example? To summarize, attempt to consider every aspect of the relative arrangement of the seat cushion and the amount of room you have in your office chair to identify any possibly deal-breaking issues. Also, keep in mind that all seat cushions are rated based on weight, so it’s a good idea to pick a cushion seat that matches you in this regard as well.

  • Don’t Cut Corners

Some seat cushions for your office chair can be pretty pricey, so whatever you do, don’t try to save money by cutting corners. Keep in mind that the more expensive the seat cushion, the longer it can last, even up to 12 years for some. Remember that calculating the cost over 12 years and reducing it down to a monthly basis results in a improved perception for a high-quality office chair cushion.

If you buy a cheap office seat cushion, it may fall apart after a few years, so you may end up spending the same amount of money on numerous cushion seats over a decade as you would on one of the more expensive cushion seats.

As you can see, there’s a lot that goes into buying an office seat cushion for your office chair online from places like Amazon and others, but avoiding the frequent mistakes listed above will ensure you obtain the best seat cushion for your office chair.

And if you need an office to go with the seat cushion and chair, we can help. Contact us today so we can show you how we can help you find the right office at the best price. No Obligation!

 

 

 

 

5 Costly Office Maintenance Problems

 office maintenanceRegardless if you’re a building manager, business owner, or company employee, a sudden office maintenance problem in your office is a huge headache. For one, it can introduce inconveniences that can distract, annoy, and ruin your day. Add to the fact that some of them can get very expensive. Even if you are in a fully service office where the landlord pays for maintenance, you should still be aware of these potential problems to ensure the smooth operation of your business.

Thankfully, you can avoid most office maintenance problems from happening if you’re aware of them and perform basic preventative measures. Below are some of the common ones.

Roofing

Damage to your roofing can easily escalate to bigger problems. Some of them are the following:

  • Water damage
  • Mold growth
  • Breakdown of insulation material

To prevent roof damage, you should frequently inspect your roofing and gutters for any signs of wear and tear. When you see any damaged, broken, or missing shingles, immediately replace them. On the other hand, if you’re roofing is already eight to nine years old, you should get it inspected by professionals.

Also, remove any dirt and debris accumulating in your gutters since leaving them may cause water to stagnate. The stagnant water may cause damage to the gutter and your roofing system.

If you’re not confident to do these things, don’t hesitate to consider getting help from roofing contractor office space specialists.

HVAC

Most people in your office will go crazy when your heating venting air conditioning (HVAC) stops working during a scorching summer day or a freezing winter night. And, of course, getting your HVAC repaired is an expensive and time consuming ordeal. 

To ensure that your HVAC won’t just give up on you, be sure to do the following:

  • Check any vent blockages: There are many reasons vents get blocked in offices. Some of them are employees taping them up, relocated pieces of furniture, and dirt accumulation.
  • Inspect filters and thermostats yourself: You need to rely on professionals to ensure that your office’s HVAC is in working order. However, getting yourself familiar with your HVAC and basic and routine checks, like checking your thermostats’ batteries, setting, and wiring, can help you save money by preventing yourself from unnecessarily calling a tech to come over just because you were unaware that a single battery was dead.

Plumbing

Universally, water damage is a costly problem. Aside from expensive repairs and renovations, it can also cause health problems in your office as it can encourage mold growth.

Fortunately, you can prevent water damage from happening by doing these simple steps:

  • Be vigilant of your utility bill: If your water bill increased for no good reason at all, there might be a leak in your plumbing.
  • Perform scheduled ocular inspections: Roaming around the office building can help you find any potential water damage disaster biding its time. Also, be extra observant during winter as it’s common for pipes to freeze during this season, which may lead to burst pipes and flooding.

Appliances

One of the biggest challenges in offices is extending the life of all equipment and appliances. After all, accumulated maintenance, repairs, and replacements overheads can cost a company an arm and leg. Not to mention that discord between management and employees can easily happen once both parties don’t agree on what to do with problematic office equipment, like printers, copiers, and even refrigerators.

Unfortunately, most modern office equipment nowadays has a set lifespan. Since you can’t make your appliances and office machines last forever, what you can do is to at least make them operational until they’re near their end-of-life (EOL).

EOL is a stage in a product’s lifecycle that manufacturers stop producing parts, developing updates, and supporting owners. Most electronic products today have estimate lifespans of 10 years, which often coincides with their EOL.

Here are the steps you can take to prevent unexpected breakdowns of your appliances or unnecessary costly repairs:

  • Keep any documents, trinkets, and items needed for warranties intact.
  • Train users on how to properly use the machines and appliances according to the manual.
  • Set a strict policy about the consumption of food and beverages in the office.
  • Assign point persons who’ll perform periodic basic maintenance.

Floor Coverings

Regardless of the type of floor covering your office is using, it’s one of the most abused parts in your workplace. Replacing them is both a hassle and an expense you don’t want to incur. To ensure that your floor coverings can service you for a long time, do the following: 

  • Check appliances that contain or generate water. Some of the common ones are water dispensers, refrigerators, and dehumidifiers. They may be leaking water that may spread water damage on your floor coverings.
  • Replace iron and plastic caster wheels with rubber ones. However, be sure that you check the specs of the replacement wheels since some of them may break if the load exceeds their limits.

Finally

These are the most common office maintenance problems you can prevent to avoid suffering from business interruption and/or sudden costly repair expenses. In addition to saving money, it can also make the people working in your office happier and the business run smoother.

Looking for an office you do not need to worry about these maintenance issues? Our local reps know the market, know the landlord and know whw takes care of their buildings. Contact us if we can help! No obligation.

The Secret to a Well-kept Office Space

office spaceMany of us can agree that we become more productive when working in a clean and tidy office space. Not only does a neat workspace increase your motivation but it also is better for your mental health. A disorganized office has more distractions which disrupt your mental state of mind. These disruptions may be a subconscious reaction that may not even realize. 

If your workspace has pieces of paper shoved all around the room; on chairs and on desks, this image immediately triggers your stress levels. Once stress levels are high, it becomes difficult to focus and get anything done. Seeing a pile of papers on your desk may also reduce your motivation levels, creating a negative mindset of your job and yourself. Furthermore, an office space is where many of us spend 8-10 hours a day for 5 or 6 days a week. If this area is unsanitary, filled with a build-up of dust and dirt, the effect that has on both your physical and mental health can be harmful. 

Yes, cleaning the office can be a tedious and difficult job. Sometimes we find ourselves spending hours cleaning up the room on days we should be relaxing and enjoying ourselves. However, making sure your office is tidy and well-arranged doesn’t have to be difficult. This article will be discussing the one secret you need to a well-kept office. 

A proactive mindset 

The secret you need to learn is a change in your mental state of mind: developing and maintaining a proactive mindset. This mindset is an “act now or pay later” mindset where you realize that if you don’t clean your office regularly, in 6 months you will be spending hours trying to. It is the realization that 10-20 minutes of maintaining the office space once a week beats over 3 hours of cleaning it up on a Sunday afternoon.  Once you get into this habit you will be programming your mind to be proactive. Cleaning won’t end up being a hassle at all. Before you know it you’ll be spending a couple of minutes every day tidying up in order to come back to a clean space in the morning. 

This proactive mindset will also become useful in your day-to-day life. You will get to thinking ahead and creating a contingency plan in case anything goes wrong. Your next family trip will be as easy as pie because you will have packed the necessary things for any emergency. 

Now that we know the secret to a well-kept office, the question is how do we achieve it. 

How to become a proactive person

  • Think big picture: shift your mindset to focus more on the future. If you catch yourself trying to find the easy way out of a task or procrastinating remind yourself that in the long run taking action now will only benefit you. Attempt to remind yourself of your own long-term goals. Where you want to end up, what you are really trying to accomplish. A great way to do this is to begin journaling, it allows you time to reflect on yourself and reminds you of the things you find important in your life. 
  • Own up to your mistakes: often we find ourselves and others complaining about others lack of motivation, lack of opportunities, etc. These complaints are an unhealthy habit; trying to convince yourself you are not responsible for a certain situation or outcome within your control. 
  • Focus on what you can control: sometimes we don’t realize that we are getting wound up in situations we can’t control. This creates feelings of anger, stress, and disappointment. However, if we accept that certain situations are not in our hands we begin to focus on things that we can change. This leads to feelings of confidence, empowerment, and achievement. You may not be able to control how bad the traffic is one day but you can make sure that you step into a clean office and ready to work. 
  • Prioritize: being able to prioritize certain tasks aids us in getting things done. Completing every task at once is impossible. However, if you can decide on which task to complete first you will get it done well and be motivated to carry on to the next task. Holding yourself accountable is an action you must take. Don’t be the person waiting for something to happen but be someone who gets tasks done. Actions like this will also motivate and drive other employees to act similarly. 

Steps you can take now

  • Restart 

if the thought of going into your office makes you shudder because of how unorganized it feels then your first step is going to be to restart. To begin a new habit of becoming proactive in keeping your desk clean, you need to begin with it clean. Spending a day tidying up and reorganizing the files and papers is worth it when you remind yourself after this you won’t have to do it again. You can also use this opportunity to rearrange your workplace in a way that you think might suit you more, you may even consider finding a new office space. Working in a new area might create more motivation since you will be viewing a different perspective.  If you stay proactive about keeping your office organized, this will be the last time you spend hours tidying up. 

  • Create more storage space

After completing the first step you should have cleared out some drawers, cabinets, and files. This has already increased your available storage space. In order to keep your desk clutter-free, you must use your storage space to the biggest advantage. If you would like to invest, you can purchase storage boxes place old files that you still need. 

  • Keep essentials items close 

Everyone wishes for a clean and organized desk. The best way to achieve this is to minimize. You should aim to identify the tools you need most to complete your work on a day-to-day basis. These items should be the ones that are kept on your desk. Any item that will be redundant or isn’t needed most of the time should be kept in a drawer or separate cabinet in order not to create clutter. 

  • Create work zones

If your office is spacious enough you should consider creating work zones, this will minimize work that is done at your desk. An option would be if you have a chair or sofa next to a coffee table. This could be assigned as the area to look over paperwork and do some reading. One section or side of your office could be where you keep all of your supplies. This section should preferably have a closet or shelving space to help you stay organized. Once you end up creating these work zones and using them, they will eventually become a habit. You will find your office will be neater because you are not doing all of your work in one space. 

  • Find a filing system that you like

If you are someone that doesn’t have to do any filing for your job you are in luck. Yes, filing is extremely tedious but thankfully we live in an age where a lot of things are online. The main filing we need to worry about is all of the paperwork – this still needs to be organized efficiently. It is useful to research different types of filing systems that will be most helpful to you. If you are lucky and you don’t need to file paperwork, but need to keep track of digital documents, make sure you develop an easy-to-use system so you won’t lose important documents.

And if all this does not help and you want to find a new office you can start from scratch with, contact us and we can help.

How to Make the Best Out Of a Small Office Space

small office spaceWe know how it feels to work in a small office space. It’s crowded and feels cramped, which makes it difficult to focus at work. Everyone has been there. You have a small office space, and you are running out of room to work in. There is barely any room for your desk, let alone all the other projects you need to get done. How can you make the best with what little space that you have? Just because you have a small office space doesn’t mean it can’t be functional. You need to know how to get the most out of your personal space.

In this post, we will show you can create an organized and productive work environment despite limited space!

Assessing Your Space

Take a look around the area and see what you have available. If there are any new surfaces, try to make use of them! You may need to ask for permission from management if that is an option. Think about how you would like your desk set up before laying out all of your supplies on it or what items you need to put in the drawer.

Considering Furniture

When it comes to office space, there are two types of furnishings available. The first type is modular and can be used in a different configuration for each person depending on their needs. For example, this type of furniture would typically have an adjustable height or multiple heights to accommodate the individual preferences of people who work at that desk.

The other type of furniture is non-modular and can only be used in the way it was designed to be set up. This gives a uniform look but may not accommodate everyone’s needs equally. Consider how much area you have available when selecting your office layout; too many chairs or desks will take up more space than necessary. Also, laying around area rugs in the office will give the small space a relaxed look, making it seem bigger than if the floor was plain. The number of people working in your small office dictates what type of desk and chairs to purchase, so this is a decision that should not be taken lightly.

Declutter the Office

Another way to make the office seem bigger is to declutter. This means to get rid of as much unnecessary material as possible, such as old files and anything that doesn’t have a place in the office. If it’s not necessary for business purposes or stored off-site, don’t bother keeping it around. It will just make your small space look cluttered and smaller than usual.

Organize Cables and Files

Organizing is the key to an airy open area. When it’s time to tidy up, the first step is to gather all of your cables and other materials into one area. Then you can start filing things away neatly in their designated places. This will help keep everything from looking cluttered or messy on surfaces that are used for work purposes.

Organize Your Desk Space 

It may not be a big idea, but it can make a big difference. If you have more than one type of work that needs to be done on your desk, it can get cluttered quickly with all the piles and stacks. Look for some drawer or tray system where you can put items into their designated places, so they are not just sitting on top of each other in an insight.

Create a Round Meeting Area

Round seating style takes less space. Create a small round meeting area with a round table and chairs, or use the corner of your office for that. Be creative and use small chairs, couches, or even outdoor furniture to create a circular meeting space.

Make Your Office Feel Bigger 

Do you have a small cubicle? Consider adding whiteboards on each side to make it feel more open. If you are trying to create an opening in front of your desk, add plants behind the reception. Also, a pot or two in the corner will give the office a fresh and aesthetic touch. Finally, lay large area rugs to make the area comfortable and cozy. A rug will also give space a deeper and inviting feel.

Open Storage Spaces 

Glass and wire mesh bookcases or cabinets can be used to maximize storage space in an office while still allowing for a clean, organized appearance. These displays help create the illusion that you have more room than what is available because they allow light to come through, making your desk area brighter. Add some plants in the corner of your desk to make it feel more open.

Use the Walls and Ceilings 

Wall is not just for hanging frames, pictures, and artwork. Use them as storage areas for boxed items that you need easy access to. If your office has high ceilings, use shelves in those spaces to store boxes of paper supplies and other storage options. Take advantage of corners. Create shelves in the corners of your office and use the wall space to display items that you want visible.

Take Advantage of the Floor 

The floor doesn’t have to be just for walking on or displaying a rug. Create storage by laying out rugs in rows with boxes underneath them to be easily retrieved when needed without having to take up additional furniture. Also, create a co-working space on the side of the room.

Utilize Common Areas

Utilize all the common areas in your office. For example, turn the lounge to create an area for people to work, or use this area as a place where you can have meetings with clients, so they don’t need to come into your workspace. Make a small meet-up or workspace on the side of the room.

Use Walls to Your Advantage 

Walls are a great space-saving way for you and your employees to stay organized. Make shelves out of boards around doors or windows, making sure they don’t impede opening and closing them. You can also use wall space as an art installation by hanging up some beautiful storage boxes.

On a Final Note

If you are looking for an office for your business where you can have more space, let us know and we will show you how we can help you acquire your next office space. Our services are free to you. No obligation for requesting info