Growing Up and Moving Out

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What To Look for When Considering Leasing Office Space

Perhaps you are a funded startup with a growing team that needs office space; or, you may be a boomer or GenXer who is running a small business – but too many years in corporate means it just doesn’t feel right working from home.

So you’ve decided it’s time to get yourself a dedicated workspace. Great – congratulations. But when you go to look, there’s either a lot of empty spaces – usually way too big for what you’re looking for, the leases are too long starting at 3×3 or they’re just out of your price bracket. Hmmm. Next.

You could share. And that could be a great option, especially if you’ve got a friend who works with similar client types in a complementary industry sector. Hmmm, maybe none of those either spring to mind.

You could try co-working. If it’s just you, this can be an excellent idea. Of course with co-working you’d be in a large room with a dozen plus other people. And the environment can be really stimulating. But there’s not a lot of privacy to be had – if that’s important to you.

Or you might also consider a serviced office. Yes, really. Now, lots of people get the wrong idea of serviced offices. Many people think it’s more expensive and yes, that might true on a cost per square metre basis. But you also need to think about what else is added in. Those extras include;

Electricity, Phone Access, Internet

All of which you’d have to pay for on a monthly basis. And don’t forget about the up-front deposits and connection fees. Oh and as an added bonus, if anything happens and the internet, lights, etc ever go down, unlike leased spaces someone else will take care of fixing that for you.


Most serviced offices come fully furnished. Of course, you can add a piece or two of your favourites, but it means you don’t have to go out and drop a grand or two on desks, returns, bookcases, chairs, etc. Most offices will even throw in a pot plant too (and its upkeep just in case you were born with brown thumbs).

Meeting Spaces

Now, this is one of those extras that are sometimes charged for and sometimes a set amount of use is included. But the thing to remember is that if you have to pay for it, you’ll only ever pay for it when you use it. Whereas, if you leased a property with a meeting room, you’d be paying for an extra 20-ish square metres (maybe more) Every. Single. Day. of your lease term. Imagine if you used it 3 x a year. That makes for a very expensive meeting (around $3K per meeting on very cheap rent alone). Plus your serviced office will also likely throw in a projector, screen, more furniture, plants, mints, someone to get tea and coffee for your guests, etc. And admin help will be on call, should you need it to prepare reports, etc.

Coffee, Tea, Milk, Sugar, Spring Water, Paper Towel, Dishwasher Packing/Unpacking

And best of all, none of that ever runs out. Well, actually, it does, you’ll just never need to notice or do anything about it.

Office Cleaning

It’s amazing just how quickly things get dirty. And if you’ve come from corporate, you’ve probably never really thought about it. It just happened. And so it does when you have a serviced office. Yep, you’ll never have to consider whether or not the bathroom (or kitchen) is in a fit state for a client to use ever again.

A Receptionist and Colleagues To Say Good Morning To

Or have a chat around the water cooler with from time to time. Now that might sound bizarre as an inclusion. But so many business owners cite loneliness as one of the biggest downsides of running their own show – especially if you don’t have staff yet. Simply being surrounded by other people, all with jobs to do, can put you in the right headspace to get your work done. And as an added bonus, the receptionist will also welcome any guests you might have visit you too.

Proximity to Other Things

Depending on the location you choose, you will probably have access to cafes, restaurants, public transport, parking stations, etc. You might also have access to views.


Having been working in serviced offices for more than two decades, this is a really big one for clients. You might need a space for a big project that’s only going to last a couple of months. In a serviced office that’s no problem – just try asking a real estate agent for that and getting them to return your call. Or you might win a big piece of business three months into your lease that means you need to take on more staff than you’d anticipated and now you need a bigger space – that’s easy, you just pick up and move down the hall. Not so easy when you’re tied into the standard 3×3 lease. And the reverse is also possible if your business needs to downsize, so can your space.

So now you have a better understanding of what you’re really getting when you’re considering a serviced office, how do you choose the right one for you? Stay tuned for the next blog post.

If in the meantime, you’ve decided that maybe a serviced office is for you and you’d like to see what’s on offer at SOI, we’d be delighted to talk to you about what you need.

You can call us on 1300 318 680 or drop us a note.

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Article by Michelle

September 13, 2016