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5 key points to consider when choosing business premises

8th November 2018 Print

Getting business premises is the next step in the right direction if you want your brand to grow. Even if you’re selling online, a physical store can attract more customers to your brand and strengthen your local community standing. But, opening a physical shop can be a massive step, even for well-established online businesses. The first part of the process is choosing a suitable property that works well for your brand, it’s employees and customers. We’ve put together some top tips to help you choose the right property for your business. 

#1. Make a List of What You Need from a Business Premises:

First of all, it’s a good idea to narrow down your search by drawing up a list of everything that you need from your new business premises. How important is the location? How big do you need the premises to be? Will you need to make any adjustments to better serve your customers, for example, disabled access? It’s also a good idea to think about your long-term business plans and how they may be affected by your choice of physical location. Do you want to be the biggest name in your industry by this time next year? Then it’s important to choose a location that has the ability to grow and expand with you. 

#2. Choose the Right Location:

Location might be touched upon in your list of requirements, but it really is a massive factor to think about all on its own. Where your premises are located can make all the difference when it comes to getting customers through your doors and encouraging them to spend money with your brand. Don’t just think about the town or city when choosing business premises. Consider the location in terms of accessibility for your customers. How close will you be to motorway junctions? Public transport links? Don’t forget to think about competitors, too – how many are close by? 

#3. Buy or Rent?

Whether you’re looking for an office or a fully-fledged store where you can sell your brand’s products to customers, one of the biggest decisions that you’ll face is whether to buy or rent your premises. There are many advantages and disadvantages to both; weigh these up carefully to determine which is the best option for you. Renting means investing less initial capital, but you’ll also be more restricted when it comes to managing and designing the building as you choose. On the other hand, whilst buying gives you more freedom to do what you like with the premises, it also requires a much heavier financial investment and can hold you back if you wish to relocate in the future. 

#4. Legal Considerations:

Whether you choose to rent or buy, it’s important to keep legal considerations in mind when it comes to your commercial property. Some of the main factors to consider include planning permissions, health, safety and fire regulations, licences, accessibility, and insurance. In addition to ensuring that the building meets all health and safety requirements for your employees and customers, you’ll need to consider factors such as paying stamp duty when purchasing the premises or ensuring that you comply with the lease terms in a rented property. Whether you’re planning to buy or lease, make sure that you get advice from a good national commercial law firm beforehand. An expert in commercial law, Harper James Solicitors will be able to help with a most aspects of transactional issues. This can include agreements of leasing, hire and maintenance. This is ideal from a provider that can help you across the board. 

#5. Get the Look:

Undoubtedly, you’re likely going to need to change some aspects of your property’s appearance, but it’s always best to avoid making any large or significant changes wherever possible. 

Firstly, your main job should be to check that the property is presentable from the outside – does it give off the kind of impression that you’re looking for? If your business premises look shabby and run-down, it could potentially deter customers, rather than inviting them in. 

Next, don’t forget that it’s not all strictly about cosmetics. In addition to looking the part, you should also opt for a building that has all the features and facilities that you will need. Consider the needs of both your employees and your customers – will you need a kitchen area? Toilets are a given – for both customers and staff. 

Lastly, it’s important to assess that the building is large enough for your purposes. Don’t just think in the ‘here and now’ when considering the size, either. If you have any plans to grow for the future, then the last thing that you want is a physical store that’s going to hold you back. Make sure that you’ve got enough space for stock, displays, and for all the people who’re going to come through the door on a daily basis – and then some. 

If you found these tips helpful, we’d love to hear from you in the comments!