A Checklist for Your Overland Park Office Space

A Checklist for Your Overland Park Office Space

Leasing a space can be a very tiresome process. In order to avoid headaches and problems down the road, try using this checklist to make sure you are taking all the right steps before signing the lease, as described in the article, “Do’s and Don’ts for leasing a space.”:

Did you check how much space you need?

Every office has its own cultural habitat that needs a certain amount of room. Maybe your office space is looking for a more open workspace where employees can easily see each other and interact. Maybe you are better off with closed or sectioned off rooms for intimate meetings. Either way you will want to know how much space you need before picking the perfect spot. Remember if you lease a space that is too big it will feel empty—on the other hand, if you lease a space that is too small you might hinder your businesses growth. So consider the size and the necessity of important rooms before signing that lease!

Did you check prices elsewhere?

Compare! Compare! Compare! Looking at similar spaces in the same city is a good idea for anyone looking for office space. To truly understand the market one needs to find out what rate similar building with similar specifications are being rented for. Ignore any data about rental rates transactions that are over a year old. Check addresses, square footage, age and location, and then compare among places with similar prices. 

Do you know who you are working with?

Remember when looking at office postings that the realtor is working directly with the landlord and wants to work to get a better deal for the landlord—this is their job. So in other words, don’t expect this realtor to help represent you in the transaction. Maybe look into working with a realtor directly who will help you find the best price for you.

Did you look for similar features and incentives?

When looking at spaces it is a good idea to look at a few different buildings. As outlined earlier, you are going to want to check prices and compare them to other buildings. However, this isn’t the only thing that should be compared when shopping around. You may want to look into what other business owners have received in terms of incentives from their landlords. Things like minor improvements or moving allowances are not uncommon among landlords who are looking to rent out space.

Are you sure the lease is correct?

It is never a good idea to assume that the lease is correct when signing for your new office space. Things that are said verbally might be left off the written lease or just completely forgotten by the landlord. New business owners who are looking for office space might look into getting a real estate attorney in order to save some money in the long run.

Did you get quotes in writing?

On top of making sure the lease is correct it is also a good idea to make sure you have all the quotes you were promised in writing. This seems like a no-brainer, but disputes about oral versus written agreements are not uncommon. You need to make sure to look at a few things before settling for a space, such as if the fees you are responsible for or rental rates change monthly. For instance, you might be looking at a space that is $5.50 per SF, but that rate could change to $25.50 per SF in the future, so just double-check before signing.

Do you understand the building zone restrictions?

Mistakes in zoning restrictions can end up being costly for you. Some places require a special permit from the city if you want to set up a retail business in an area. That means if you want to set up your new shop in the hip industrial area of town, you may need to sign up for a permit. So make sure you check with the building owner beforehand so you don’t have issues once you have already shouldered the cost of moving.

Did you read every line in the lease agreement?

Make sure to read every line in the lease agreement. Unlike residential real estate, there are no laws in place that protect you when signing up for commercial real estate. Make sure you know who is paying for what and how your money is being spent. Figure out who is paying for taxes, janitorial services, insurance, and even ground maintenance. Steer clear of verbal agreements and assumptions, and only focus on what is in writing.

Before signing the lease make sure you have checked all aspects of both the space and the document so you know exactly what you are getting!

If you are looking for Kansas City office space, give a commercial real estate broker in Overland Park a call at 913-685-4100 for more information about our available space.


4 Reasons To Think Twice About an Open Office Plan in Your Kansas City Office Space

There are many reasons to consider an open office plan in your office rental space: a collaborative atmosphere, savings on having to pay to rent more individual space for employees, the possibility of keeping an eye on all employees’ productivity throughout the day. However, there are a few reasons why this office space design has proven to be less than ideal for office workers. Here are a few facts to consider, as outlined in the article “Google got it wrong. The open-office trend is destroying the workplace”:

#1 Distractions

Studies have shown that many employees are affected by the distractions that accompany an open office plan through lack of visual and sound barriers. While the innovative, open atmosphere might give the illusion of productivity, in many cases the design has proven to take a toll on creative thinking, focusing abilities, and employee job satisfaction.

#2 Lack of Privacy

While employers might feel it is a benefit to be able to keep an eye on their staff, many employees in an open office plan do not thrive under the feeling that they are being constantly watched not only by their boss, but also by their coworkers. One study actually showed that contrary to the idea of better work coming out of communal environments, privacy can actually be a contributing factor to increased job performance.

#3 Interaction

One of the most touted benefits of the open office plan is improved ease of interaction. However, surveys have suggested that less than 10% of workers in any type of office cited communication with coworkers as a problem in the first place. If the need for inter-office communication was a non-issue to begin with, it calls into question the need for an office design that specifically aims to address communication.

#4 Illness

A seasonal side effect of an open office plan is the quick spread of disease among employees—one person comes in while sick and suddenly half the office is out of commission.

If you are moving into a new office rental space, the layout of your office is an important aspect to consider. While an open office plan is a cost-effective and trendy option, the actual benefits of this design are up for debate. Consider doing some research and talking to other employees or business managers about their experience with this type of layout before making a final decision.

Looking at office suites for rent in Kansas City? Give a commercial real estate broker in Kansas City a call at 913-685-4100 to set up a tour of a space!


3 Questions You Should Ask About Your Kansas City Office Space Lease

3 Questions You Should Ask About Your Kansas City Office Space Lease

Renting commercial real estate can be a more complicated process than one might think. With markets varying based on location, outdated terminology, and very little regulation, the process can be confusing for a business looking for a good deal. Here are a few big questions you should be asking throughout the leasing process in order to come out with the best deal possible, as suggested in the article “3 Things You May Not Know About Commercial Real Estate”:

Are there any hidden fees?

Leases can turn out to be riddled with hidden costs if you are not a careful reader and negotiator. One major source of unexpected expenses is Common Area Maintenance costs (CAM). While this is a typical expense you should expect when signing a lease, be aware that the landlord can put a variety of different expenses into this category. For example, landlords have to pay property management or asset management fees, but sometimes they can pass this cost onto the tenant through CAM charges.

Know that a lot of costs are unavoidable, but it is important to know the exacta amount you are paying, what that money is going to, and whether you are being asked to pay a fair percentage of those costs. Don’t be afraid to clarify and negotiate these kinds of terms.

What is my real square footage?

Square footage, which describes the size and boundaries of an office space, seems like it would be a standard measurement, but there are actually varying ways that square footage is calculated; different markets have different ways of measuring property in terms of what they include and exclude in their measurement of a space. For example, some measurements might include things like wall cavities or pillars – spaces that you really cannot use.

To avoid paying significantly more rent for space that is unusable, make sure you first clarify with your landlord what exactly the listed square footage includes, and then make sure that you visit the space yourself to check and see that there are not a multitude of awkward, unusable areas that you are being charged for. You might even consider bringing in someone to measure the space for you to make sure everything matches up.

Can I get any financial help to improve a space?

If you know that you need to make some changes or improvements to a space, a big question is where you are going to get the money to do that. You might be able to negotiate for a tenant improvement (TI) package from your landlord, which is money that the landlord puts toward the improvement of the space. This privilege is usually reserved for tents signing a long-term lease, and landlords might really emphasize this benefit to compete with other spaces you are looking at.

However, it is important to closely examine where exactly this improvement money is coming from. Know that most likely the landlord is actually building these improvement costs into your rent in the long run – sometimes even with an interest rate as high as 10%. This can be costly in the long run, so make sure you know exactly what you will end up paying. This improvement package can be great if you do not have the cash initially improve the space, but make sure you don’t wind up ultimately paying more than you budgeted for.

Getting a good deal on a commercial real estate space is possible, but it requires some research and careful negotiation. Make sure you are prepared to get the best deal possible for your business!

If your business is looking at commercial MLS listings in Kansas City, give us a call at 913-685-4100 to find out more about our affordable office space in Kansas City!


5 Tips for a More Efficient Planning Process of your Kansas City Office Space

5 Tips for a More Efficient Planning Process of your Kansas City Office Space

Productivity and collaboration are key components to any thriving business, and these can be promoted by designing a space that employees feel comfortable in. Making sure that employees are happy with changes in office space will help make the transition from one space to another a lot easier! Even though the space and design layouts of the Facebook and Google offices are impressive, they aren’t exactly effective for everyone’s workspace. So here are a five tips to consider when redesigning your own offices, as suggested in the article “9 Efficiency Tips for Space Planning Your Office”:

  1. Make it your own. Personalization is an key factor for feeling proud of your space. People who design and rework their own work environments feel a sense of ownership of their space. This can increase a sense of attachment and productivity toward work that is developed and executed there.
  1. Consider the amount of space. When designing the amount of space you need for your office you may want to consider how much space is actually essential versus how much space you want. One thing to consider is that storing and filing important materials are very important parts of the workflow, but this needs to be done without sacrificing the natural feel of the office space and the workers’ requirements.
  1. Design then grow. It is important for the office layout that you are considering to be designed with growth in mind. When coming up with each of the different departments of your office space; remember to think of the unique type of work that will be getting done there, as well as what the space will be in the future of the company.
  1. Think technology, be aware of budget. Technology is a great way to create a unique environment for your office. Talk to IT consultants and management about what is needed to get a deeper understanding of what could be used in the future for workers. This may help create a very distinctive atmosphere for your employees. However, be aware of the budget and time constraints – it can be easy to get lost in the conceptual design of an office.
  1. Look for a variety of opinions. The design of the new office space should incorporate other people’s ideas as well. Remembering to ask management and IT is important, but also consider asking employees about potential design ideas. Get everyone involved in the redesign and this will help promote a positive attitude toward the change.

Redesign and change can require a lot of work, but incorporating these tips could change a dispirited space into something everyone is happy with!

Are you looking for commercial realty in Kansas City? Give one of our commercial real estate brokers in Overland Park a call at 913-685-4100!


3 Ways to Evaluate a Kansas City Office Space Location

3 Ways to Evaluate a Kansas City Office Space Location

A big thing to consider when renting a new space is the area in which it is located. A good way to do this is to make a checklist of things that are important to your business and see if a location meets that criteria. Here are some examples of questions you might ask when evaluating an office building’s location, as suggested in the article “HOW TO: Choose the Right Office Space”:

1. The Neighborhood. There are a few things you want to consider when looking at the neighborhood, the most important being whether or not it is a safe area, which is important for both your customers/clients and your employees. You might also want to consider the perceived atmosphere of the neighborhood—if you’re setting up in a place known for hip and rising businesses, that could really give your own business’s image a nice boost.

2. Amenities and Services. Think about things like where your employees can go for lunch, where you can meet clients, where you can get office supplies, and what other surrounding businesses might make it convenient for employees to run errands after work.

3. Transportation. This is a particularly important issue if you are in a big city center—you want to check for nearby subway or bus lines, but also think about how easy it is to reach you by car or even bike. Be sure to communicate with employees about how the location affects their commute and what their options are.

Location is such an important part of selecting a good office space, so be sure to take the time to consider an office’s location from all angles!

If your business wants to know more about office lease rates in Kansas City, give a commercial real estate broker in Kansas City a call at 913-685-4100!


4 Ideas For Keeping Your Kansas City Office Space Cool

4 Ideas For Keeping Your Kansas City Office Space Cool

With temperatures rising, the change from a boiling hot spot and a cool office makes all the difference with employee comfort and productivity. Here are some tips on how to turn a sauna of an office into cool breezy workspace, as outlined in the article “5 Tips for Keeping Your Office Cool During the Hot Summer Months”:

1. Close the windows and turn on the AC.

This one might seem like a no-brainer but with winter months behind us one of the best ways to beat the heat is to close the windows and keep cool air inside. A combination of an open window and blasting air conditioning not only hurts the energy bill but also causes the office to become hotter. Keep the hot air outside and the cool air inside by making sure your air conditioning unit is up to date and running efficiently.

2. Avoid dehydration.

Dehydration can cause several problems for employees during the hotter months. Keeping water nearby and plentiful can help with the overall comfort of employees and increasing the general good mood of everyone in the office, so make sure the office water cooler is available to everyone.

3. Switch off and cool down.

Do you have some electronics that aren’t being used during the summer months, or at all? Like an obsolete fax machine that only costs you money by increasing your energy bills? Turn it off and unplug it. Doing this can help reduce the temperature in the office by making sure certain electronic equipment isn’t giving off excess heat that the office definitely doesn’t need.

4. Ditch the suits and heavy clothing.

Comfort seems to be a key to better moods and productivity, so if you want to see customer satisfaction increase because of the better moods of your employees it might be a great idea to implement a more casual dress code. Have employees ditch the constricting suit and tie instead let employees come in whatever they want; this will help better moods in many ways.

Giving attention to comfort during these hot summer months can help a lot with productivity, so cool down your office and keep it working strong!

If you are looking for affordable office space Kansas City, try a commercial real estate broker in Kansas City. Call 913-685-4100 for more information about our available space.


3 Tips for Being a Great Boss in a Kansas City Office Space

Developing a great team of employees requires a good leader at the helm of the business. Here are a few ways you can become the kind of boss challenges your employees to rise to the next level, as discussed in the article “4 Things Great Bosses Do”:

#1 Respect Your Employees Time

Part of empowering your employees to succeed involves giving them the time, space, and tools to do their jobs well. One element of this means running meetings that are efficient and valuable. Employees know when you are wasting their time, so make sure that when you call people away from their work for a meeting, the information is going to be useful and delivered in an effective way.

#2 Solicit and Acknowledge Feedback

Regularly get feedback from your employees about your leadership style and how you can better help them. Take this as an opportunity to listen, not argue, and try to do one thing that demonstrates that you heard and considered the employees’ feedback. Your team will appreciate seeing that you really do care about what they have to say.

#3 Be the Inspiration

“Lead by example” is a great adage to follow. Be the kind of worker you want to see in your office, and your employees will see your hard work and hopefully follow your lead.

A great team of employees starts with a great boss!

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


4 Ideas for Improving Wellness in Your Kansas City Office Space

In recent years, businesses have been taking steps to become more sustainable in their office spaces by recycling, improving energy efficiency, and instituting other environmentally friendly practices. However, sustainability has recently taken on another dimension–one that focuses on the whole being of the employees. Studies suggests that happier employees tend to be more productive, so some businesses are starting to seriously consider the health and well-being of their workers. Here are a few examples of what businesses have done to cater to their employees wellness, as suggested in the article “Designing a Better Office Space”:

1. Kitchens – many offices have started stocking pantries with healthy snacks for their employees, as well as creating events that take place in the office kitchen, allowing people to interact while making and eating meals.

2. Furniture – recent research suggesting the negative health effects of sitting for long periods of time have led many offices to redesign their furniture to allow employees to stand and stretch as they work. Some examples of these types of furniture include standing desks, or even treadmill desks for added exercise.

3. Outdoor Areas – some businesses are opting for offices situated near walking trails, giving employees the opportunity to get outside and walk and enjoy fresh air during the day, also opening up the option of using the trail as an informal meeting place to walk and talk with teams or other employees. Other offices are simply adding small outdoor areas to their office space where employees can step outside and relax for a moment.

4. Hybrid Offices – following the trend of creating relaxed, collaborative spaces, a few businesses are even creating hybrid office spaces that are connected to a coffee shop or some other area where employees can conduct their business or meet with clients in a space in a more creative and relaxing atmosphere.

If you are thinking about updating your office space or moving to a new one altogether, consider factoring in some of these wellness ideas to your design plan. Employees might welcome a more comfortable atmosphere and your concern for their health, and perhaps reward your business with their diligence and loyalty.

If your business is looking for a commercial space for lease in Kansas City, give a commercial real estate broker in Kansas City a call at 913-685-4100 to learn more about our available office spaces or to set up a tour.


4 Mistakes For Entrepreneurs to Avoid in A New Kansas City Office Space

Any entrepreneur knows that starting a small business is a risky procedure. So many new businesses fail, often for simple reasons. Here are a few pitfalls to avoid, especially within your first year, as suggested in the article “4 Reasons Small Businesses Fail”:

#1 Finances

This is probably the largest and most obvious challenge for start up businesses. Even if someone has a great idea or product, people often underestimate how much money is required to get a business off the ground. Major expenses include start up costs, expansion, purchases for inventory, and fortifying your business. Carefully calculate the true bottom-line cost of starting your business, and look into the Small Business Administration loans often available to entrepreneurs.

#2 Getting the Word Out

Successful marketing is a huge part of getting a business going, but so many entrepreneurs aren’t fully utilizing modern technology to market their services or products. Small businesses might not be able to invest the money in marketing that big companies can, but there are many cost-efficient ways to market, such as using ratings and reviews, analytics, live chat, and more. Small businesses might be less visible, but they are also more nimble, especially in an age where online shopping is becoming more and more popular.

#3 Poor Management

While setting up efficient systems and processes isn’t the most fun part of the new venture, inconsistencies in these areas can hurt customer satisfaction and ultimately the business’s bottom-line. These tasks include marketing, customer relationship management, inventory management, and accounting processes.

#4 Growth

Just because a small business is successful in the beginning does not guarantee continued success. Small businesses need to keep an eye on their industries and evolve accordingly. This can be difficult for entrepreneurs, who are often already overworked and acting in many different roles, but keeping an eye on the direction of your business and the climate of your industry is well worth the time investment.

If your small businesses is just starting out, be aware of the pitfalls that have led to the failures of other small businesses. It can be difficult to wrap your mind around every aspect of starting a new business, but don’t let yours go under because you neglected something as obvious as marketing or finding the right loans.

If your small business is looking for office suites for rent in Overland Park, give a commercial real estate broker and Overland Park a call at 913-685-4100.


Three Pros of Joining a Co-Working Kansas City Office Space

Collaborative workspaces have become very trendy, especially in entrepreneurial or small business environments. The communal setting can be a great way to boost creativity and motivation, as well as share the cost of a better quality office space. Here are a few reasons to consider renting a space with tenants from other businesses, as suggested in the article “The Reasons For and Against Joining a Co-Working Space”:

#1 Connections

A big benefit of working in a collaborative space is the opportunity to network with other small businesses and entrepreneurs as you’re building your own business. The communal work environment not only puts you near like-minded people, but could also mean access to investors or professionals that might be able to help your business. Who knows what kind of lucky break you could have while chatting with other professionals and entrepreneurs in your shared space.

#2 Affordability

Obviously the cost of an office space is a major concern for any startup business. If you want the amenities of a great office suite, but can’t afford to rent an entire office yourself, co-working might be the best way for you to diffuse the costs of a good office space. Together with other businesses, it will be easier to afford equipment you need, and you might even meet freelancers who can help you with various tasks.

#3 Solidarity

Sometimes being a self-starter can be lonely and it can be hard to motivate yourself each day. So being surrounded by other people, especially like-minded people, can help keep your spirits up and keep you accountable as you strive to make your business successful. These other people can also be great sources of creativity and might be able to help you with problems or roadblocks that you encounter.

Consider these positive aspects of joining a co-working space if you are trying to figure out what kind of office rental space is best for your business. A collaborative environment is not necessarily suited to all business types, but could be a lifesaver for startups in need of a community and a lower-cost office space.

If your small business is looking for affordable office space in Kansas City, give one of our real estate brokers a call at 913-685-4100 to learn more about our Kansas City office space for lease and discuss what kind of space is best for your business.