Most businesses start with a home office. This makes moving into an office space outside of the home an exciting milestone.
However, this is not a singular milestone. As your business grows or as your needs change, you will find yourself looking for new office spaces every few years.
Glasgow is a great city to grow or start a business. Since most business owners know that, the office rental market of the city is quite competitive.
The largest city in Scotland had the strongest office market in Europe as of December 2018 with a 6.7 percent quarterly rental growth.
Decades of underinvestment are pushing rental levels up against a backdrop of strong demand and limited supply. This competition for rental spaces can lead to rush decisions.
The wrong location, wrong price, or wrong terms can bring in additional expenditures that might make your business suffer in the long run.
It’s essential that you find a lease that favours your company. One that does not compromise your budget and gives you the right location and amenities for growth. It’s also important to understand the lease agreement before signing on the dotted line.
Let’s see how you can achieve all that
Tips and Tricks for Leasing Office Space in Glasgow
1. Set Clear Goals for Your Move
Successful moves require planning, a budget and a timeframe. Before you go out to visit spaces, set the date of the move and the budget you can allocate for the move and the upcoming monthly expenses.
Evaluate different properties before the move to get a feel of various options. Starting well in advance prevents delays stemming from communication problems, transaction problems, complicated relocation processes, and other unpredictable factors. Planning ahead means that you get to move on time into an office that meets your business needs and with a lease agreement that favours the business.
If you are a small company or startup, give yourself six months to evaluate options. For large companies, start evaluations at least two years before the current lease expires. This is not a process that you want to rush into. Give yourself time to search, choose, negotiate and rent.
2. Hire an Expert
When looking for new office space in Glasgow, you want to get the ideal location for a great price.
But then again, so does everyone else.
A broker or tenant rep is probably your best bet. Going at it alone is okay, but brokers have years of experience in helping companies like yours. They can help you save money and move in faster.
Remember that the landlord will be looking to maximise the lease price. You, therefore, need someone with inside information on the market — someone who will look out for your interest.
Plus, you also have to keep running your business. Chasing properties all over town is time-consuming, so help from a professional is invaluable.
Sometimes the good locations and buildings fill up before they even get advertised. Your tenant rep is, therefore, in a much better position to know when a space that suits your needs becomes available so that you don’t miss out on opportunities.
They will take over the responsibilities of finding the space while you concentrate on running your business.
Negotiators in real estate have their own language. Brokers know this lingo and can explain it to you.
Brokers also know all the right people to make the move as smooth as possible for you, including the best real estate attorneys and interior designers for your office space in Glasgow. An interior designer or office fit out company will help you choose the space and implement the features that improve your company’s productivity.
3. Calculate Costs Carefully
When planning a relocation, do not only calculate the price of the space. Calculate cleaning cost, moving cost, the cost of new equipment and the monthly payments over the next few years.
Determining the price and planning beforehand will allow you to run your operations smoothly after the move. The most important thing is to make sure you don’t overpay for your office in Glasgow.
Have a clear picture of what you can and cannot afford. As the new tenant, your payments will include the base rent and common area maintenance charges. These charges cover expenses, including:
- The upkeep of shared spaces like elevators, hallways and lobbies
- General maintenance of the building
- Utility costs as agreed upon in the lease agreement
- Property taxes and insurance
As you go around, viewing potential office spaces, let the landlord give you a cost breakdown. The breakdown will allow you to plan accordingly or choose a different space, depending on your budget.
4. Go for a Long-Term Lease
A long-term lease gives you bargain power. The proprietor will negotiate on cost if you are renting for a long time.
But before you sign the lease, make sure that space will fit your needs for years to come. Breaking out of a lease that you’ve outgrown sooner than expected can be quite costly.
5. Create a Checklist for What’s Important
The checklist will contain things you want to get from your ideal space. The list should include things you are not willing to compromise on and those that are negotiable. It will help your selection process go faster as you can rule out spaces fast.
What to include:
Are you looking for a high-end location or a downtown one? Are you willing to compromise on location for a bigger space or the opposite?
Your budget and the type of clients your business has will determine this. A central location benefits your employees and clients who have easy access to various means of transportation.
Studies have shown that longer commutes lead to a rise in blood sugar, blood pressure spikes, high cholesterol levels, depression, increased levels of anxiety, and stress. It also leads to experiences of low life satisfaction and lack of happiness.
An easy commute for your employees will boost their morale, leading to increased productivity. Your clients can also access your offices easily. Your employees and clients will also have access to amenities like restaurants and cafes.
However, the price may be a little on the steep side. If your business does not require you to be in a central location, go for more economical areas of Glasgow.
Glasgow has three classes of office space:
Class A has great looking buildings with an amazing infrastructure, great facilities, and easy access. They are available at a high price.
Class B: Older buildings with great management and facilities. Can be scaled to type A and are cheaper than class A.
Class C: These are older buildings that are not in popular neighborhoods. They require extensive renovation. But they are affordable.
The office space should be big enough to fit your team and allow for expansion. It should also have space for common areas like kitchen, conference room, and the break room.
There should also be ample parking for employees and clients.
Some of the things that should be properly described or mentioned in your lease:
- The amount of electricity you use per day and outlets needed
- Central heating
- Air conditioning
- Maintenance fees
Use this checklist to narrow down your search to at least five locations. Compare and contrast and spend adequate time going through all of them. Then choose the location that meets most of your checklist needs.
Avoid emotional attachment when choosing a location. Instead, go for a location because it fulfils your business needs. Think about it this way: are you willing to pay the extra £500 per month for that nice view?
Use this checklist when negotiating terms with the landlord, too. Use it to go over the amenities and building features. Don’t just assume that the building has everything you need – ask all the questions you want.