When you're preparing to move into new commercial office space, you have a big list of tasks on your to-do list to complete; however, while you're prepping for the move, it's vital that you don't forget about the lease itself. Doing all of the following before you sign the lease and move into your new space will help to ensure that everything goes smoothly.
Crunch All of the Numbers
Before you finalize the lease, it's important that you double check your math. Make sure that you understand what your monthly obligations will be. What are the costs of rent and common area maintenance? Will you have to pay any additional fees to your landlord? What services and utilities aren't covered by the lease and what are their estimated costs? You don't want to find out that you're way beyond your budget the first month after your move.
Peruse the Directory
Don't sign the lease until you've taken a look at the list of companies that are located in the building. Do any of them conflict with your brand or pose a conflict of interest? Are there any competitors already in occupation? You should also take the time to check the lease for language about competition and acceptable use. Is there anything to stop your landlord from allowing a company to move in? Will you face any problems on expanding your line of business due to non-compete or acceptable use clauses?
Look at the Building Through Fresh Eyes
A visitor's impression of your company will start to form long before they reach your office space. The parking area, lobby, elevator and hallway will all begin to shape how they see you. That's why it's important to put yourself in a client or customer's shoes. Park in the visitor parking area and enter the building, taking the route that any guests would take. Observe your surroundings and try to imagine what message the building sends. Is it in line with your brand image?
Turn on Your Phone
Your employees will likely all have phones at their desks, but that doesn't mean they won't be using their smartphones throughout your office. Adequate lower level reception is vital in today's business world, making it important that you check your space for dead zones. Turn your cell phone on and walk through the office, checking how many bars you have. If you don't issue company phones, have members of your team with different cellular providers take a test walk. If you discover dead zones, you may need to have a wireless booster installed in the space before you move in.
Set a Reminder
Every lease contains language about how the renewal process works. In some cases, you must notify the landlord if you want to remain in your office space when the lease expires. Others require you to refuse or the lease will renew. Either way, you will need to communicate with your landlord by a date specified in the lease. Make sure that you understand the conditions for renewal before you sign. Once the deal is done, set a reminder for a few months before to begin reviewing your options. Also, mark the deadline for notifying your landlord.
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