Buying a property for business purposes means taking a slightly different approach to buying a home. Investing in that property is a challenging decision in itself, but once you’ve made the decision, the hard work really begins.
The main thing to remember is that buying a commercial property for your business will require time. You’ll have many questions to answer about the property and a lot of research to do. For new businesses and long-established ones alike, buying a dedicated business space is never something that should be taken lightly. So here’s our quick guide on finding the right commercial property.
Begin your research
Your first step is to find out as much about your shortlist of properties as possible. It’s at this early stage that you should contact your conveyancing solicitor. If you have previously purchased property — either domestic or commercial — the chances are you had your conveyancing solicitor on speed dial. Although conveyancing for a commercial property takes a little longer, the process is largely the same.
Your solicitor will ensure that all legal documents are completed and sent to where they need to be while conducting in-depth property searches on your behalf. Those searches will ensure you don’t end up buying a property that will cause more headaches than profits. When it comes to buying commercial property, you can never have too much research, especially in terms of local developments or anything that might leave you running at a loss.
Would it be better for your business to be based in Sculcoates or Beverley? The question of location is always a factor when buying a property, but when that property is for your business, you must get it right. That’s going to come down to even more research and some more awareness of your business plans.
The property you decide on has to be large enough to house your team, it has to be presentable if you have clients or customers popping in, and it has to be accessible. Of course, if you don’t intend to have clients visit the property, then you can make different decisions. For a traditional business, even one now working online, more central locations with higher passing traffic and footfall tend to be more useful. However, those brands working primarily online can save money by moving from expensive central spots.
Unless you’re planning on doing everything yourself, you need to ensure your team can easily get to the property. So check the traffic conditions and any accessibility issues caused by public transport. The further away you are from city centre locations, the harder your employees may find it to get to your workplace.
You may also need to factor in parking, which will always be a problem in busy locations. Don’t invest in commercial property if you’re going to struggle with parking. That can quickly become one of your biggest headaches, and it doesn’t tend to have any easy solutions either unless you’re willing to pay. It’s this kind of research that’s going to help you narrow down your shortlist of commercial properties, so don’t skip it.
Scouting for a new business property can be a lot of fun. Imagining your business operating out of your dream building is nice to think about, but don’t be led by your heart. Even the most fantastic commercial property may not be suitable for your business model. You can’t just think about what you need from that property this year; you must also consider the future.
One major element to remember is that if your business does grow, you may need your workspace to grow with it. If there are any restrictions on how that property can be used, you may end up having to search for a new property all over again because you’ve scaled faster than you thought. Remember to look at the use classes for every property you view, so you don’t delay your opening.
Remember your budget
While it’s common sense not to buy a property outside of your budget, never forget that buying the property isn’t going to be the only expense. It’s all too easy to limit your budget to the price of the property you can afford. Unfortunately, you also need to factor in the legal fees, the cost of the property search, and the fixtures and fittings you’re going to need.
If you spend all of your budget before you get the keys, you could end up with a fantastic workspace that’s sitting empty. And if you’ve spent all of your budget, it’s going to remain empty for a while. There will always be unexpected costs when purchasing any kind of property, so manage your budget accordingly.
If you’re in the market for new business property, make sure you take your time. Rushing into a commercial property purchase will always lead to unexpected issues, and any mistakes could cost you your business entirely. So make sure you have everything checked and in place before you agree to a price.
The more time you take over checking properties, researching the local area, and getting input from your team, the better your final choice of property will be. That’s only good news for the future of your business.