Question: What’s your best tip for finding affordable office space when you know your team is going to keep growing?
Consider the Suburbs
"I think the "cool factor" often lures entrepreneurs into justifying expensive downtown office space when there's really no business case for it. Location is crucial for some companies, of course, but for others (like ours), an easily-accessible suburb is just fine. Our employees love avoiding the traffic, our clients don't care, and we save thousands a month on rent."
Consider Transforming Your Current Space
"Bring in a professional interior designer for a consultation to offer any new insight for your current space. When the conversations started about our limited space and growing team, we hired a local design consultant who helped us see our office in a new light. We expanded our physical presence in our co-working collective, brought in new furniture and are now able to accommodate our growing team."
Leverage a Longer Lease
"A stable tenant can often become a landlord’s best friend. That said, many landlords are willing to negotiate heavy front-end discounts on longer term leases, especially to reputable tenants. This can allow a business to acquire a larger space than it currently needs without increasing its immediate overhead while at the same time buying the company time and money to continue to hire and grow."
Find a Recently Vacated Office
"We moved from a start-up incubator to an office tower downtown. We were able to do so economically because this Fortune 500 company recently renovated the space and then suddenly decided not to move in, providing us with pristine executive offices. Ask a commercial real-estate broker if they know of a lease about to expire or a company preparing to downsize -- then get ready to pounce!"
Find a Sublessee
"We found affordable office space in a prime location in downtown Berkeley. We decided to rent more than we needed and then subleased part of the space to another company (with the property manager's approval of course). We now have access to that space when we need it but don't have to pay for it today."
Create a Virtual Workspace
"Eliminating an office space gives you limitless boundaries for growth. Using powerful project management and time tracking tools, such as Podio and MindMeister, you can track what all employees are working on and keep a strong infrastructure as you grow remotely. You can also find and hire talent from a worldwide pool of applicants. Include yearly company meetings at a central location."
Consider Leasing From WeWork
"ZinePak has been working at our WeWork location for more than two years. It was a great option when there were only two of us, and it's been the perfect option for every team size we've had yet, up to 11 (and counting). The key is finding a month-to-month solution so you have flexibility to ramp up or scale back without any interruption in your business activities."
Choose an Open Floor Plan
"An open floor plan leaves you with room to switch up the layout when needed. My company just moved to a new, entirely open space in the heart of Philadelphia, and when we first found the space it was a cubicle farm. We tossed the cubes, ripped down dry wall, and tore up carpet — and now we have way more square footage to work with."
Look for Month-to-Month Rent Options
"We found a large co-working space that rents out desk spaces month-to-month so that we can easily buy up desk spaces as we add more employees. We are a seasonal business, so this is great for months where we need to decrease in team size as well."