Finding office space in Pensacola, as it is with most cities, is a necessity for any growing business. Over the last 12 years I have had the pleasure of working with many individuals who needed to locate available office space, either to lease or to purchase. I would like to share with you what I have seen over the years, and give some tips that may help you when it comes to buying or leasing your office space in Pensacola, or other areas. Here are four very important questions you should ask yourself:
1. Do You Really Need Office Space?
Many people think they need office space just because they own a business. However, often business owners are able to convert a room in their home into office space. This saves the business the monthly expense of rent and can actually help as a tax deduction at the end of the year.
There are situations, however, when a business is required to have a physical address that is not a home, PO Box, or virtual office. Be sure to research the state statutes for your business type when deciding what type of office is best for your company.
Before selecting a home office, consider whether this will give a professional appearance to your clients and a distraction free environment for you to get your best work done.
2. What Type of Office Space is Best for Your Business?
Traditional office or retail frontage: Some business types can benefit from drawing new customers with retail visibility, such as a wedding planner, for example. Other business types, such as an attorney, give better impressions for their clients when they are located in an office only type environment.
Office complex or stand-alone building: Consider whether your business could benefit from the synergy of nearby complimentary businesses in an office complex. If your business is usually a specific destination for your clients, perhaps you would prefer the security and flexibility of a stand-alone building.
Don’t be afraid to think outside the box. Perhaps your business could share office space with another business that has some extra room in their building. Maybe you could meet clients in a conference room at a local church during business hours, when the room is underutilized. Consider co-renting space with another complimentary business. For example, a massage therapist could split the rent on a space with a nail technician or an esthetician.
3. Should I Lease or Buy?
There are certainly benefits to owning your own office space in Pensacola. Some of those benefits are tax deductions on mortgage interest and capital improvements, investment in an asset that will most likely appreciate, control over the style and improvements of the interior and exterior of the space, and more.
On the other hand, some professionals prefer leasing their office space. It is better to lease if you are unsure of how quickly your business will grow. You don’t want to be trapped in a long-term property loan if you expect to outgrow the building quickly. It is also better to lease if you don’t have the capital for a loan down payment and building improvements needed to make the space useable.
4. What is the Right Way to Sell or Lease Your Office Space?
Do you have an office property you want to sell or lease? If so, it is important to find a commercial real estate agent who is a specialist in office space. This is true for virtually any type of real estate. If you want to sell or lease a restaurant, choose an agent with previous restaurant experience. We have come across many situations where a property owner made the mistake of hiring a generalist to manage their listings. We frequently list properties that were previously listed for many months, sometimes even years, without a single interested prospect ever touring or making an offer. We are happy to be able to produce results quickly for these property owners, by showing that commercial real estate listings need more advertisement than a for sale sign on the front lawn.
Catching fish requires using the right bait. Commercial agents who specialize in a specific property type have learned the right combination of bait for the specific fish they are targeting.
Pensacola, just like many other cities, has a strong demand for office space. If you decide you need office space, determine whether buying or renting is the better option for you. Once you’ve figured that out, select a commercial agent who specializes in office space to help you find the perfect location for your business needs.
Did you know that it doesn’t cost you a single cent to have a commercial real estate agent help you find office space? That’s right – commercial agents can represent tenants or buyers at NO COST to the tenant or the buyer. You can learn more about it by reading my article on how commercial real estate advisors get paid.
About Stephanie Gilbert – Stephanie has been working in commercial real estate since 2003. Although she has done a variety of deals, her focus and passion, when it comes to commercial real estate, is leasing and selling office space, primarily in the Pensacola, Florida area. If you would like to contact her, you can call her at 850-610-8339, or email her at [email protected] You can follow her on Twitter at @.