Southcreek News

Southcreek News

Renting Commercial Real Estate in Kansas City: 5 Tips for Dealing With Rising Rental Rates

Renting Commercial Real Estate in Kansas CityRent premiums across the country have gone up by 11% or higher in cities with prime commercial real estate. From Midtown Manhattan to Santa Monica, growing businesses are unable to even find a space, let alone afford the exorbitant rental rates on top of the usual expenses of buildouts, IT, furnishing, etc. once they sign a lease.

So what is a business to do? The biggest factor businesses usually consider when signing a lease is the risk associated with the length of the their lease and the amount of space they are renting. If a business rents commercial real estate in Kansas City that doesn’t leave room to grow, they risk hitting a point where they are bursting at the seams before the lease is up. But if they rent a little extra space to plan for growth, and that growth doesn’t come, they are paying money down the drain.

Fortunately, there is a small glimmer of hope emerging in the commercial real estate market for those who are willing to think outside of the box. Here are some tips for re-invisioning the commercial real estate rental process while still protecting your business, as suggested in the articles “Criteria to Consider When Renting Commercial Space” and “How to Get a Handle on Exorbitant Office Rents”:

#1 Take your time looking for office spaces for rent in Overland Park.

Renting Commercial Real Estate in Kansas CityOne surefire way to end up overpaying for lease is to rush the process. Start looking for a new space long before you actually need to move. Giving yourself more time will not only allow you to see more options, but it will increase your leverage in negotiations.

#2 Assemble your criteria for a Kansas office space for rent.

To help you keep your eye on what is really important to your business, go into the search process with a clear list of criteria. Here are a few questions to consider:

  • How much space do you need?
  • What is your budget for rent? For other expenses like buildouts?
  • What do you need in a location? (i.e. foot traffic, proximity to public transport, etc.)
  • What features do you need? (i.e. conference rooms, private office spaces, a reception area)
  • What features do you want to improve the efficiency of your business? (i.e. inexpensive power sources, employee parking on-site)

Relying on this list can ensure you don’t get caught up in other flashy features that your business can’t afford.

#3 Work with the right team.

Renting Commercial Real Estate in Kansas CityOnce you have your list, find a good commercial real estate broker who works for tenets, not landlords. Find someone knows the market and location inside and out. Work your way down to two or three final options, then start negotiating your lease. Before you sign the lease, hire one more team member–a real estate attorney who can double check your lease for any pitfalls or places where you could ask for more. Working with a great team might be a little more expensive for your business upfront, but getting a solid lease could save quite a bit of money in the long run.

#4 Embrace the uncertainty of finding a commercial office space for rent in Overland Park, KS.

Everything about modern life is moving away from a  “one-size-fits-all” mentality. Companies like SaaS are introducing software models that allow for scalability and flexibility, and business rental could move in a similar direction in time. Right now the leasing industry is stuck in an old mentality, but as businesses demand more flexibility and scalability, there is the hope that things will progress.

In the meantime, it is okay to be afraid of the uncertainty of commitment, because the current market system is looking to maximize broker commissions, so it is a good option to keep your risks and liabilities low and maximize cash flow by signing short term leases.

#5 Cut costs with non-traditional models.

If you think about it, office space rental is your business’s biggest expense after payroll, so you want to consider ways you can maximize the efficiency and productivity of your space while minimizing costs. As mentioned earlier, businesses have two apparent options: rent a space that fits your business and risk outgrowing it, or rent a space that is too big and risk paying too much if you don’t fill it.

But there are other alternatives – for example, office sharing. Office sharing provides more flexibility within the traditional options:

  • Rent part of a space on another business’s lease so that you have more flexibility to expand or downsize as needed.
  • Rent a larger space for you to expand into, but offset the expense by sharing the space with another business until you need the space.

This is one example of a creative way to optimize your space and bring down expenses, but there are others, ranging from hot-desking to giving employees more flexibility to work from home. You just have to think outside of the traditional office space box.

If your business is interested in an office space for lease in Kansas City, give us a call at 913-685-4100 for more information about our available spaces!

Office Space for Lease in Kansas City: Should I Stay or Should I Go?

Southcreek Office Park Building III Office Space Overland ParkIt’s one of the biggest decisions business owners have to make as their business grows: when is it time to move, versus when is it better to stay in a current space? Business owners make significant decisions for their business on a daily basis, but this particular decision can have huge financial ramifications, so it is important to consider it from all angles. Here are three factors to consider when thinking about whether to expand into a new office space or stay in your current lease, as described in the article “Ready to Expand”:

Cost of Commercial Real Estate in Kansas City 

Are you paying for extra space that your business does not need? Are you wanting to hire more employees, but unable to because you simply don’t have the space? Both of these are signs it might be time to downsize or upgrade. A move will be expensive in the short term, but if your business is wasting money on useless space or your growth is crippled, you need to start thinking about other options.

Another cost to consider is the cost of the move itself. You will need to hire a moving company, possibly rent or buy new furniture and equipment, and deal with downtime when your employees will be unable to utilize office space. Do some research and try to get an estimate of how much it will cost your company in total to move. Then consider a) whether your company can afford that cost at this time and b) whether this short term expense is preferable to the long term expense of either overpaying or being unable to grow in your current space.

Logistics of Moving to a New Commercial Office Space for Rent in Overland Park, KS

The biggest thing to consider in all real estate is location, so before you make a move, compare the logistics of your current location to the logistics of a possible new place. Do you need to be by freeways or public transport? How far will you be moving away from or towards customers and clients if you move? Will your employees have access to parking and local amenities? If you have the option of moving into a location that will be better for employees and better for access to clients or customers, that might be worth the financial risk.

Infrastructure of an Office Space for Lease in Kansas City

Consider the infrastructure of your building versus a building you might move into. Typically when you move, it should be an upgrade in infrastructure. If you move to a new building, you can potentially have better internet, more cost-efficient energy systems, and other benefits that might actually offset some of the cost of moving.

Getting answers to these questions can seem overwhelming, but it is necessary to gather this information to do a real comparison of the costs and benefits of your current space versus a new one. Create a spreadsheet to track all of these details, and work with a good broker who knows your location. Make sure you work with a broker who is paid by the tenant and not the landlord so that they have your best interests in mind. Once you have done some thorough research, you can make an informed decision about whether it is better to stay in your current space or take the risk of moving to a new one.

To learn more about our available spaces and commercial property management in Overland Park, KS, give one of our commercial real estate agents in Kansas City a call at 913-685-4100!

How to Find and Design an Office Space for Lease in Overland Park, KS, With Your Employees in Mind

Relocating to a new office space for lease in Overland Park, KS, can be a big commitment for employees, so as you are looking for and designing an office space, you want to do as much as you can to get their buy-in. Here are a few tips for keeping your employees in mind during this process, as suggested in the articles “Finding an Office Space Both You and Your Employees Love” and “6 Inexpensive Ways to Help Employees Escape the Cubicle Crush”:

#1 Ask for employees’ help with research on commercial property for lease in Overland Park, KS.

The best way to start the transition to a new office space strong is by showing employees that you value their opinions. You can do this by seeking their help with researching the new space. Put out some questionnaires to find out or about their preferences. Do they prefer to work standing or sitting? Do they like collaborative spaces or individual spaces? What time of day are they most productive? What locations would be ideal for them? Gathering and analyzing this data can help you determine what kind office space you’re looking for.

#2 Involve them in design and decoration of the office space for rent in Kansas City.

Once you have found a space, build excitement by involving them in the process of designing and decorating the space. One idea is to give each employee a $100 gift card to IKEA to buy office furniture. This might not buy a lot of furniture, but it will send the message that you trust your employees and want them to have some control over their new space.

Take this a step further by encouraging your staff to customize their own desk spaces. Many people view their desk as their “home away from home” or the place they are most comfortable in at the office, so make it a priority to help your employees create that sense of home in their new space. Some successful companies, like Google, even give employees a small allowance for desk decoration.

You can also work together to personalize the new office and sneak in some team-building time by picking a blank wall for everyone to collaborate on decorating. Get some paint and other supplies and make a fun day of it.

#3 Designate spaces for collaboration and individual work.

As you are setting up your office space, also think about ways you can improve the long-term comfort and productivity of your employees. People have different styles of working, so many companies are shifting towards diversifying spaces to accommodate those different styles, and you can use the feedback you got from your employees while researching new spaces to help you decide on the best setup.

One area you should have is a deliberate space for sharing and collaborating. This could be a large conference room, or even a cluster of tables in the middle of an open space. It is also nice to have spaces for “accidental” collaboration, where employees can bump into each other and strike up conversations that could lead to creative teamwork. Some examples of this are communal kitchens or break areas with some comfortable seating.

People also need space for individual work, so try to designate some private spaces, even if you can’t give everyone their own office. Think about setting aside a few offices in your new space to be places where a team member can go to work on a specific project for a few hours or few days, or just to escape to a quiet part of the office.

#4 Consider the cubicles.

Again, you might not be able to upgrade to private offices for everybody, but a fresh start in a new space is a good way to reset your cubicle culture. One of the biggest complaints of employees working in cubicles is noise, so you could start implementing a few strategies to make this a little better in your new space:

  • have employees silence ringers
  • encourage them to keep phone conversations quiet and minimal
  • buy a white noise machine for “background noise”
  • allow the use of noise-canceling headphones

You can also give employees some freedom to escape cubicles by giving them flex time or allowing them to work from other places, such as a nearby coffee shop or library – proximity to these kinds of places could be criteria to include as you are looking for a new office space.

#5 Give them move in time.

When the time comes to move, give your employees a day just to get settled – assemble furniture, unpack, figure out computers, etc. This will help make the transition less stressful and more enjoyable for employees, and they will come in for their first day of real work in the new space feeling fresher and more comfortable.

#6 Open the door for communication.

From asking about employees’ preferences before finding a space to getting their help with decorating, keep the door open for questions and communication throughout the process. One thing you could do is to put up a whiteboard or chalk board and write a question on it each day for employees to answer. Asking good questions will elicit responses that will help you understand your team better and help everyone find common ground and build relationships during a new chapter of your business’s life.

Good people are the cornerstone of a good business, so it’s essential to not lose sight of your employees’ preferences and concerns as you move to a new space.

If your business is interested in commercial real estate in Overland Park with a helpful on-site management team and close proximity to a variety of amenities in Overland Park, give Southcreek Office Park a call at 913-685-4100 to find out more about our available spaces!