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What you should know about renting a location for your small business

contract30901439.jpgIt is important that small business owners carefully consider where they will physically place their business. This is important since the cost of the physical location, for your small business's daily operations, can be one of the most significant costs that you are faced with paying as the business owner.The decision to rent a space should be carefully and only if working out of your home is not a viable option, and buying your own business location is out of the question.The bottom line is that renting is a good solution, if it is done right. Here is what you should know about renting a location for your small business-

  • Start small-You should look for something smaller, rather than larger, when you are choosing a rental location. The benefit to this is that many landlords may be willing to work with you.More and more locations are being rented out in sections to a number of different small business owners, for a lower monthly cost. It is important to keep in mind that if you are just starting out, you may not even need a lot of space. If you can save money by getting by with less space, you will be better off financially, in the long run.
  • Take advantage of a renter's market-Today, the real estate market, favors those who are looking to buy, and this is true even when it comes to rental properties. Remember that as a renter you have a lot of say when it comes to asking for concessions, and choosing the duration of your lease. Although you may come across landlords who seem inflexible in their terms, more often you will find that landlords would rather have their properties making money for them,than not. Keep in mind that shorter leases are generally better, for new business owners who have not yet developed a strong track record. Conversely, if your business has been around for several years already, it could be to your advantage to have a longer lease if it means locking in today's lease amount for several years.
  • Carefully come to terms-Keep in mind that there are other concessions that you want to consider negotiating about with a potential landlord. This can include locking in terms as well as rates. You ma also want to negotiate renovations into the price. Consider asking for things like maintenance fees like janitorial expenses, repairs, parking spots, garbage removal, snow shoveling services, and management fees paid for by the landlord. However, one concession that you should not expect, is to not have to pay the security deposit. Most landlords feel that security deposits are more important now than ever before. Most of the time they are requiring stricter security deposits to cover their losses, in the case that the business they rent to goes under (an all too common occurrence). It is important to understand that landlords are small business owners too, and they need to make sure that they are not renting out their spaces, and making all kinds of concession just to have their renter leave a long-term lease, after only a few months.
  • Don't be afraid to ask for professional help-If there are a lot of options for rental spaces in your area, it is a good idea to work with a broker or realtor, who knows the properties in your area, and can help you to narrow your search. In addition if you are looking for a highly specific location with specific terms, you may be better off having someone else help you negotiate the terms of your lease. Remember, that you should know as much about your landlord as possible.
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