PM MEN­TOR

AS REAL ES­TATE PRO­FES­SION­ALS, we spend our days help­ing peo­ple move on from prop­er­ties that no longer fit: too big, too small, too old, too far from the places they need to be – you name it. But what about our own needs when it comes to pro­fes­sional premi

Elite Property Manager - - Contents -

Natalie Hast­ings

I'm happy to say that hast­ings + co have just com­pleted a re­fresh­ing of­fice change which has im­pacted pos­i­tively across all ar­eas of our busi­ness. Although it took con­sid­er­a­tion, time and ef­fort, it has been a real game-changer and a marker of busi­ness ma­tu­rity.

Are your busi­ness premises still a great fit? If not, here's some food for thought on mov­ing.

MOV­ING SIGNS

There are some big in­di­ca­tors that it's time to move: too many or too few peo­ple in com­mu­nal workspaces, in­ad­e­quate meet­ing and wait­ing zones for clients, and a sense that your space is no longer fit for pur­pose. • You might once have been happy with­out a street pres­ence, but now you need a store­front – or vice versa! • If your lease is com­ing up for re­newal, this may be a good time to eval­u­ate your po­si­tion • Growth: if you ob­serve busi­ness growth quar­ter on quar­ter, tak­ing the next step into big­ger, bolder premises might be just the thing to fur­ther ce­ment con­fi­dence in your busi­ness.

WHERE TO NOW?

If mov­ing is ab­so­lutely on the cards, you'll want to make sure your new premises will stand the test of time. Look to lo­ca­tions which are cen­tral for your team, pro­vid­ing ad­e­quate street park­ing for staff and cus­tomers. It's ideal to be close to ameni­ties like cafes, banks, post of­fices – all the nor­mal busi­nesses you and your team would visit dur­ing a work­ing week.

Think about the phys­i­cal space. Is it nat­u­rally bright, and a wel­com­ing, pos­i­tive en­vi­ron­ment? And con­sider your neigh­bours; will your busi­ness hap­pily co-ex­ist within the busi­ness body cor­po­rate or com­mu­nity you've se­lected? We knew that hast­ings + co had found the per­fect new premises in a build­ing hous­ing a pre­mium real es­tate group – be­ing on the right wave­length with co-ten­ants can make all the dif­fer­ence to your com­fort as a team.

BUD­GETS AND LEASES

Money cer­tainly mat­ters when it comes to a busi­ness re­lo­ca­tion. If you're buy­ing com­mer­cial premises, well done! If you're leas­ing, think care­fully about your lease terms and con­sider whether you are over or un­der com­mit­ting. Too short a lease or too long a lease can each have their own costs to bear. Whilst you're at the ne­go­ti­at­ing ta­ble, can you se­cure a rent-free pe­riod as­so­ci­ated with your move or fit-out? And don't for­get to look closely at your out­go­ings – if body cor­po­rate fees or rates are too high, they can swiftly make a longterm com­mer­cial lease prob­lem­atic.

THE FIT-OUT

We moved into an empty space and en­joyed hav­ing a blank can­vas upon which to cre­ate our per­fect work­ing en­vi­ron­ment. Will your busi­ness need a be­spoke fit-out to make the most of the move? If so, con­sider in­vest­ing in a project man­ager if funds al­low. Mov­ing is a time-bur­glar: don't let it take the fo­cus off your busi­ness if you can share the bur­den with an ex­pert.

Think about your of­fice en­vi­ron­ment. Will you re­quire pri­vate of­fices, or open plan zones? How are the elec­tri­cals in the build­ing – are there enough in­ter­net ca­bles, phone lines and ca­pac­ity for me­dia, such as a TV screen in your con­fer­ence room? Don't for­get plumb­ing ei­ther, as you will likely need a func­tional kitchen and easy to main­tain bath­rooms.

MOV­ING DAY

Warn­ing: this is not a drill! Mov­ing day can be chal­leng­ing, as you'll need to make sure both old and new of­fices are op­er­a­tional. Test ev­ery­thing be­fore you move: phones, in­ter­net, elec­tric­ity. Leave noth­ing to chance.

Think about when you'll move, too; week­end moves min­imise dis­rup­tion to your clients. If you're mov­ing on a week­day, have half your team stay in your old premises and the rest in­volved in the re­lo­ca­tion process. By get­ting the whole team ex­cited and in­volved in the tran­si­tion process, your new of­fice will feel like home in no time. ■

MOV­ING IS A TIME-BUR­GLAR: DON'T LET IT TAKE THE FO­CUS OFF YOUR BUSI­NESS.

NATALIE HAST­INGS is the Manag­ing Di­rec­tor of hast­ings + co. For more in­for­ma­tion, visit hast­ingsandco.com.au.

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