As modern businesses change and adapt, so do their property needs. With more flexible working hours, remote office spaces and rising inner-city rental costs, the pros and cons list of buying commercial real estate can become a little hard to navigate. The truth is, as a business owner, you are in the best position to assess the needs of your company, and to decide whether stepping onto the property ladder might be a useful financial asset. To help you make this next step, here are some of the key points that need to be considered when buying commercial real estate.
Purchasing commercial real estate provides a stable address and home for your business, as well as safeguarding your company from fluctuations in rent and contract terms. Securing a commercial space can lend a professional appearance to your business, while allowing you to meet with clients on site and in an environment that you can control.
Or not to buy?
However, getting on the commercial property ladder is not necessarily the natural next step for your company. Ask yourself a few questions: are you looking to increase or decrease your staff in the next year or so, and how much time does your staff actually spend in the office? Are you considering expanding to other cities, or even countries, in the near future? Does your business thrive off of the flexibility of renting? If so, then buying commercial real estate might not be the right step for your company at this time.
Where should you buy?
Once you've decided to buy, the next question is: where? Location is key to purchasing commercial real estate, so analyse the costs and benefits of each place you view. Employee commuting times, the proximity of transport links and access to nearby customers and suppliers all need to be taken into account. If your business is largely high-tech, consider the advantages of settling out of the city centre. Prices are lower, buildings are often more modern and security can be better organised.
What should you buy?
Before you meet with a real estate agent, form a list of all of the features your business requires from a building to help narrow the search from the beginning. Keep an eye on certain property attributes, such as energy efficiency and maintenance costs, both of which will probably be better if you opt for either a new build or a recently renovated space. Don’t just think about the ‘now’. If your business is expanding you need to plan for that; does the property have potential to be extended or are there properties around it that could be bought?
Whose help do you need?
Securing a team of commercial property experts will both prevent you from forgetting any of the finer details, as well as taking a lot of the search time off of your hands. Commission a full external survey of the chosen building before you finally put your pen to paper, and always get your lawyer to fully go over the contract with you before you sign off.
With extensive experience in both the commercial and residential property markets, Engel & Völkers has plenty of useful advice for buying commercial real estate. Browse the website or step into a local branch to find out more.