For any growing business, its physical location is likely to play a key part. This is an important choice, and getting it right, or wrong, can affect a your bottom line.
In many areas now there is a choice of types of business premises, including shared office spaces.
It is vital, therefore, to choose the right kind of commercial property to meet your demands and one which aligns with your business objectives.
What Does Your Business Really Need?
The first thing to consider are the specifications for your commercial property.
What size of property will you require, and what kind of layout will it have?
Your specifications should work with the plans you have for your business’ future development, as well as its immediate requirements
Consider the facilities you will need, and the structure of the commercial property itself. Will it require any modifications for the type of business you run?
Think about essentials such as power supply, drainage and access. Who or what will need access to your business premises? Will it need to be easy to get to from major road routes, for example, and what about parking facilities?
What Area Will Suit You Best?
As with many types of property, location is a key consideration and will depend on the type of business you are running.
For retailers, being able to capitalise on a high volume of footfall is essential, whereas service industries may favour larger sites that are less centrally located but with easy access to road networks
It is also about where competitors are located, and whether the area you choose will support your type of business.
This is especially true of restaurants and cafes.
Should You Rent or Buy?
Generally, it makes more sense for newer businesses to rent their property, opting for a short-term lease. This allows for more flexibility should you need to restructure and relocate your business.
Renting a business means needing less capital investment up front.
However, buying also has its advantages, especially for more established businesses. It can mean more flexibility in terms of fit out, refurbishment and repair, and there is the potential profit from selling it in the future.
Watch Out for Regulatory Requirements
Before putting down any kind of deposit, you must check that the building will be suitable for the purpose you intend.
Is it listed, or subject to other restrictions? You will require a thorough survey to see whether there are any harmful substances in the building, such as asbestos, to meet health and safety requirements.
If you are renting, you will have to comply with the terms of the lease, although it is recommended to get proper legal advice from a solicitor whether you are buying or leasing.
As business, you must consider your cash flow, and how much you can afford to spend on rent, or on buying your business premises. For startups especially, overspending will mean a risk, if your business does not take off.
What About Business Rates?
You may be available for small business rates relief or other allowances, depending on the rateable value of your premises.
To check your eligibility for small business rates relief, please visit gov.uk.
For an accompanying commercial property read, please visit: