For most people having an office is the next step up from home working. However, as we see things like the Olympics come to London, property to rent, buy and lease has gone up!
I don’t think I’d be too cynical if I said that demand and opportunist business owners have had something to do with that.
Here at Little Big Voice SEO we do have an office in London and in fact I technically live in London, but I know that this is not always possible for everyone to gain this kind of location without denting their budget significantly.
So what are your options if you’re a small business looking to grow?
There are shared office spaces in London which can offer a professional environment, a good place to welcome clients and of course lower overheads or you may even want to look at sharing a smaller office.
Often mutually significant industries can work together. For example, web developers may feel at home with a designer, or an accountant may find sharing an office with the business consultant works out pretty well.
Or if that’s not something you’re interested in doing then you can of course look for your own office.
Prices are quite high depending on the address to be frank, but that’s not to say you can’t get yourself somewhere reasonable within a budget.
However, reality is, any office will cost you money and increase your overheads, so where possible try and find somewhere that includes things like business rates, electricity and water as without that, you could look at adding thousands onto your bill each year.
Also, another bonus might be somewhere that includes wireless internet in the cost of the rent. This can again be quite costly so if you’re only sending a few emails a day you can see why this can be a cost saver.
Costs you may not have thought of
Even if you get all the extras and end up with a decent enough office space – you must not forget the cost of insurance. While the building you’re renting may be insured, this does not mean that your possessions are. So if you have a PC, laptop, printers or in fact anything of value in your office that you’ll be leaving each night, for goodness sake get some insurance!
You can get some great deals on the Internet and while it seems like a pointless expenditure it’s definitely worth paying for.
Another cost when you have an office is of course travel. Again, often forgotten about but if you’re a small business and you’ve been used to working from home, to suddenly have to travel not only costs additional money but takes more time.
On average, you can expect to travel up to an hour a day in the City of London (unless of course you’re really lucky and your office can be reached on foot in minutes).
Access to the office when you’re away
This is something else you’ll want to consider if you’ve got your own office. If you have staff – who is going to be responsible for having a set of keys should you be away?
Obviously there are always security issues to consider, but someone having a set of keys and the alarm code does mean that they can get in to your office anytime. So choose your key holder wisely.
Oh and on one final note. Don’t forget you’ll need a cleaner in your new office. This sounds ridiculous perhaps, but if you’re working there every day you’ll need someone to vacuum and keep things tidy for you. That is unless of course you want to do it yourself!