As the owner of a small business or someone who hopes to start one, you are probably keen to figure out different ways to save money and reallocate precious resources to help feed into your operational expenses or finance a new project or much-needed piece of equipment. Rent is perhaps the biggest expense for small businesses, second only to salaries. Depending on the location and size of your operation, it is most likely the biggest burden you carry in terms of taking care of your business. If this sounds like you, then rest assured and take a look at the following rental tips for small businesses; you might come across something that can help a great deal.
Rent for a Longer Time
If you’re a new business just starting out, you might be reluctant to stick to one place for a long period of time, since you’re not sure if you can continue paying for space long after it closes. Whether you’re just starting out or interested in renewing your lease, it’s been proven that optimism and taking a long view of your business’ health is better and will help you save money in the long run. Most landlords are more interested in renting out a business property for a long period of time. This is especially true of an area in which there is a bit of a down climate in terms of rental prospects. If the neighborhood is on the verge of a local renaissance, then a landlord would agree to a five year or ten-year lease, for example. In all cases, you will need to negotiate and strike while the iron is hot, or else the landlord may cut your stay at the location very short by jacking up prices.
Negotiate the Perks
A note about negotiation with the landlord: you should not only negotiate the terms of the lease itself but also negotiate the “perks” that come along with renting the space. Landlords always want to earn revenue from properties, so things like a parking lot, management assistance, maintenance, and repairs or even garbage removal all add to the final cost. If you look at renting in a place that’s more amenable to affordable costs, you will soon find that it is completely feasible to negotiate certain perks and that the landlord will be willing to cut you some slack. Or, they may be able to entice you by actually providing you with different perks you may not have even thought of, such as assistance with property management, payment for janitorial work, and so on. Don’t be shy, and you will be surprised at what you can get.
Understand the Market
Before renting the place, or negotiating to extend a contract for space you already use, do your research and understand the market. Sometimes, it makes more sense to work with a broker who understands the intricacies of the local real estate market. While you may be tempted to find a place and negotiate the lease on your own, it’s not always the smartest move. There are so many lines you need to be aware of such as escalator clauses, expansions, termination rights, and so on, that it might be difficult to handle on your own unless you are an experienced broker yourself. Not only that, but you should probably check in with a real estate lawyer so that you know your rights and are fully aware of what you need to sign up for. After all, a commercial lease is incredibly complicated, and there’s no reason to not hire the proper contractual help to get things moving.
Research Your Landlord
There are few things worse than finding a terrible landlord to rent from, for both a home residence and a business. Landlords are a notoriously finicky bunch, and it can get worse if the economy isn’t stable, and especially if the area in which you are setting up shop is not necessarily in the best shape. As unsavory as this may seem, you should really consider looking into the landlord, and seeing if they have any bad business decisions they are trying to hide. For example, are they in trouble with local authorities due to renting out properties with faulty infrastructures? Are they unable to pay back a major loan, or do they have terrible credit? All of these are red flags and you should be aware of them.
When it comes right down to it, finding the best space to rent for your business is a major feat and is usually cause for celebration. Make sure that it remains a positive turning point in the life of your small business by conducting the requisite research and getting the right people to help you.