Signs your Business Needs a New Space

“You cannot make progress without making decisions.” Different sources attribute that pithy proverb to different authors, but no matter who coined it, the message is plain: Any sort of success will require you to make a choice — and usually more than one. Selecting specific courses of action isn’t always easy, though, and that’s doubly true when it comes to picking a new space for a commercial business.

Why is the decision so challenging? Well, shifting spaces entails significant business disruption. It involves significant expense. And it’s not without risk. Sometimes, though, you really do require an office upgrade or a company relocation. Below you will find nine signs your business needs a new space.

Reason #1: A Spike in Your Current Rent

When leases can last for more than a decade, having a landlord bump up your rent can significantly impact your business’ prospects. Not every rent increase warrants a search for a new space, especially given that relocation carries inherent costs. Additionally, many landlords would rather negotiate with you rather than face the prospect of filling an empty space (itself a task that can take months or years). However, if a building’s owner or manager insists on a rent spike that will hurt your company, it’s time to leave.

Reason #2: An Increase in Your Revenue

Companies can’t always start their operations in their ideal locations. Sometimes they need to settle for less prestigious sites that better fit their budgets. But as time goes on and revenues increase, you may not need to hold course and stay in your current unideal digs. Indeed, sustained growth may be an indicator that you can jump into your ideal office space. Make sure, though, that you aren’t basing a move on transient revenue boost that will evaporate in a year or two, leaving you unable to pay the rent.

Reason #3: A Decline in the Surrounding Area

Sometimes a reason for a move may not lie with your business. The neighborhood in which you work may be the primary problem. Perhaps your organization moved into an area that was supposed to be gentrifying — only the anticipated improvement never came. Maybe the district has degraded from blue-collar respectability into dangerous squalor. It could be that other more desirable locations have arisen, causing a general exodus. Whatever the cause, a decline in the surrounding area can hurt your business’ prospects.

Reason #4: The Increasing Age of Your Current Building

“It has aged like fine wine.” That saying is supposed to indicate that a particular thing gets better with age. But here’s an unpleasant truth: Most vintages don’t improve as one year rolls into the next. The same holds true for commercial real estate. Office buildings aren’t cathedrals, and even the most impressive edifices need lots of TLC to remain presentable decade after decade. When it comes to your property, do the common areas seem shabby? Is the facade dingy and damaged? Are you embarrassed to tell people you work there? These are all signs that your company needs a new space.

Reason #5: The Needs and Desires of Your Clients

To reference the last section of the previous point, if you feel chagrined about the state of your office, imagine how your clients perceive it. If the people who purchase your goods and services regularly express irritation or dissatisfaction with your space, you should note it. Similarly, pay attention to the results of your prospecting. Are you picking up new business? Are you also retaining it? Have longtime clients begun sending some of their business to competitors — or perhaps all of it? It could be that your current location doesn’t meet their needs or fulfill their desires.

Reason #6: The Needs and Desires of Your Employees

Your employees complain about not being able to comfortably do their work. They keep slamming into desks and counters. HR finds itself dealing with an increasing number of incidents and complaints. The original section that you had dedicated to storage has overflowed, and you’re now watching other areas getting overwhelmed by files, merchandise, and cleaning supplies. All of these signs clearly indicate that you and your employees need a bigger office space.

Reason #7: The Needs and Desires of the Talent You Want to Hire

When your current employees find their day-to-day environs dispiriting, you can rest assured that new talent you’d like to hire won’t want to join your team. This reason doesn’t require a lot of detective work to discern. You know your company’s core competencies and how it stacks up in its particular industry. You also know your competitors and what kind of cachet they possess. Should you find prospective employees choosing less renowned competitors over you, then something is wrong — and it very well could be your office.

Reason #8: The Need to Have the Premises Match Your Business’ Brand

Why might talent avoid your company due to its office space? Well, one reason might be because the place where you work doesn’t match the sort of business you claim to be. A financial services firm that isn’t in the financial district takes an instant hit to its credibility. A lobbying group not located a stone’s throw from the capital can’t effectively engage with legislators. And a design firm stuck out in the suburbs stands little chance of snagging significant clients. This reason may sound solidly centered on real estate, but it also requires you to have a clearer vision on something more vital than that: the distinguishing characteristics of your product or service. If you don’t have a rock-solid understanding about the unique characteristics of your brand, you’ll have to grasp that before you begin considering a new space.

Reason #9: The Need to Increase Efficiency and Productivity

Selecting a superior space isn’t an intellectual exercise. It has practical implications. Consider a company that reached its production-possibility frontier, that point at which it can no longer make more of its primary good or service. In order to increase its efficiency and productivity, it will need a new, larger place of operations. Perhaps your company requires more bulky equipment or more IT infrastructure or simply more space for employees. Whatever the reason, a need to increase productivity that you can’t satisfy in your current environs is a sure sign that it’s time to move.

Whatever your reason for seeking a new space, don’t blindly jump into a new lease or purchase. Commercial real estate decisions can impact your business for years to come. Reach out to us to today so what can help you find your perfect property.

Anne Barer

About Ro Crawford

Ro has extensive background in several sectors of the Real Estate industry including residential and commercial assets. Ro is responsible for developing a comprehensive marketing plan for each property as well as managing the company’s social media accounts. She designs, writes and edits offering memorandums, press releases, proposals for new business, eblasts and more. For questions, comments, or suggestions related to our blog, you can contact us via our website.