Perhaps the most important business investment that you can make, if you are doing things the conventional way, is its permanent brick-and-mortar location. While other aspects of the business can change and flow, and react to prevailing trends at short notice, your business premises are something different; they’re solid and not easily changed. In time, they become part of your business’s identity – think of how easily people use districts such as Broadway, Harley Street or Midtown Manhattan to refer not just to the location, but the businesses that reside there.
Picking the right premises, then, is something that needs to be the result of a long time spent thinking about what’s right for you and your business. Making the right choice isn’t just a case of choosing between A and B; it’s got to be about balancing long and short term benefits, judging not just cost but value for money, and a lot more besides. Below are some of the issues you’ll need to consider before going any further in this decision.
Yes, the location matters
Probably the single most important aspect of a decision over business premises is – quite simply – where they are located. If you’re opening up in this location for the first time, the chances are that you’ll be taking on new staff to assist with the adjustment. This makes location all the more important – you’ll need somewhere that is accessible by as many means of transport as possible, because a lot of the people who might work for you may be dependent on public transport.
With that said, a central location presents the issue of cost, which you can’t just hand-wave away. As a compromise, you may be best-advised to seek a place that is located in the city, but off the main road to ensure lower costs.
Can a fixer-upper work for you?
If you’re looking to keep a lean budget for your first premises – or to get a better deal on a prime location – then you might want to consider moving into a building that needs some work done. It will delay when you can open, for sure, but with the right work it can certainly mean the greater visibility, and greater profits, going forward. If you secure the right premises, then you can work with the likes of Kiasu Workforce to bring it up to scratch for a grand opening and, as a side benefit, you can get a feel for the premises before you start doing business for real there.
Do you rent or buy?
Not least of the questions you will have to ask when picking a place to base your business is the question of whether you buy the unit outright, or lease it (at least in the beginning). If it’s the former, then you have the unit as an asset come what may, which may be beneficial if the business falls on hard times. If you lease, then your initial overheads will be lower and, if things go well, you can upgrade when the opportunity arises without having to find a buyer for the property. A lot of considerations must go into this, including how likely the asset is to hold and increase its value – so this is a question that might have a different answer in an up-and-coming area as opposed to one that is highly-rated right now.
Making the right choices with regard to new premises can give your business the momentum you are looking for when it comes to making an impact. Take the chance to run the rule over all your options, and make your decision off the back of vital information.