Tuesday, October 7, 2014

Arranging for space

     Free daily tips, information, advice, ideas, with business examples
     from my lifetime of personal experiences starting, operating, growing businesses.

     Expanding? Need space for that new business? Moving it out of the house?

     You have three choices--lease the space you need, share a space with another business, or you can buy a building.

     Example: Rita was excited. She was about to realize her dream of establishing her own retail shop. She found the perfect storefront in an upscale small town. The landlord asked a reasonable price, but he wanted a one-year lease. This raised a red flag in Rita's mind. On the one hand, if her store didn't do well, she would be out of the lease in 12 months. On the other hand, if all went well, she would be in a bad position to negotiate a continuing lease. The landlord could insist on doubling the rent, knowing she would not want to move. Or perhaps he had other plans for the building and was simply looking for rental income for one year. Rita held her ground--she told him she wanted a 5-year lease or she would look elsewhere. Her persistence paid off. The landlord counter-offered and they settled on a 3-year lease at a slightly higher rent. 

     Example: John is a furniture designer. He could not afford a storefront on his own, so he went looking for a another type of space. He found a gift shop that catered to buyers of works produced by up-and-coming artists and artisans. He made arrangements to display his chairs and tables on a consignment basis. Also, he uses Facebook and Etsy to reach out to buyers.

     Example: Diane is a personal trainer. She sees clients in their homes, and she sees employees in company fitness centers. She is building up a following with an eye to the day when she can open her own facility. Her plans don't stop there. She would like to expand eventually into a full wellness center, offering space to nutritionists, Reiki practitioners, massage specialists, and other holistic experts. With her goal firmly in place, her business plan writes itself. 

     Example: Elise is a ceramicist. She used a part of her inheritance to buy a small building. There, she established her working studio and display shop. She is supplementing her income by teaching small classes along with individual instruction. She is set up so that the business pays her back with a monthly rental income, thereby recouping over time the money she spent buying the building. 

     Finding the space you need for your business can be daunting. Opportunities can vary.

     Explore all the possibilities and work each one through your overall business plan. Make certain that the arrangement you make matches your long term goal. 

     Elsewhere in these write-ups, you'll find other entries on finding and leasing space. It's just another part of managing your business. Many will tell you that in today's computerized world, you don't need a space. Well, you must do your work somewhere, even if it's done at home.  

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