They say that moving home can be one of the most stressful things a person can do, so it follows that moving into new commercial premises can be quite daunting as well. There are things you can do to make it less worrying.
What Do You Need?
As with residential property, there might be some difference between what you want and what you actually need. Starting with a list can help clarify your priorities and see where compromises could be made if necessary. Do you need the premises to look a certain way? Will customers be visiting you? Is location the critical thing?
Type of Property
Lots of small retail or manufacturing businesses start on a kitchen table before graduating to commercial premises. Will the stock rooms at the back be big enough, or do you need a warehouse as well or instead? Bear in mind the difference between the square footage on the particulars and the actual useable square footage, because if the building is a quirky shape, the two figures could be very different.
If you have a service business like a cafe or hairdresser, then location is going to be critical. Not only do you have to be easily accessible, but being visible can have a positive advantage, too. If your business has grown from just a one-man band and you now have employees, consider how much space you need for them now, and how much you might need in the future.
Finding the right spot for your commercial premises has a huge impact on the overall success and profitability of your business. Look at which other businesses are in the immediate vicinity, and where your competitors are in relation to the place you’re looking for. Space is at a premium, particularly in London, so think carefully before committing to a place in the capital. Do your research because there are some great options available. For those looking for commercial property Monument can be a good choice.
Ultimately, keep referring to your original list and make sure potential properties tie in with your business goals.
Whatever type of property you choose, you will need to factor Business Rates into your running costs. This is a type of tax that goes towards paying for local services. There are some exemptions or discounts available, so check your entitlements.
As you would as a residential buyer, get surveys done and understand how much work needs to be done, whether by the vendor, buyer, landlord or tenant. Draw up a schedule of works and ensure there is a project manager (even if it’s yourself) officially appointed to deal with work and queries.
Take your time. View lots of properties and then weigh up the pros and cons of your shortlist. Do your sums and understand what you can afford right now, but try to factor in some future-proofing so you don’t have to move again for some time because the business has outgrown the premises.