Leasing a commercial property in London – what should you know?
For many ambitious businesses, working in London comes with all kinds of perks. You’re in one of the world’s biggest and best cities, have access to markets the world over, and have well over seven million people on your doorstep. However, when looking for a suitable commercial property in the capital, there are a few factors to bear in mind
The first is finding a suitable property. Some areas of London, particularly in the City and West End, are in high demand because of their central location and transport links. Having a London address is also seen as a plus point, particularly for businesses that are expanding from other major UK cities such as Leeds, Manchester or Birmingham.
Supply and demand
Demand for commercial properties in London tends to fluctuate. In the West End, the value of transactions fell in January this year, but demand from Chinese investors has grown. Getting to a property you feel is suitable for your business’s needs requires a good sense of timing – get there as quickly as you can, basically.
When choosing a new base for your company, cost has to be factored in. What can you afford? If you have done the sums, you will need to stay within budget. Some parts of London can be a tad expensive, but looking to the outlying suburbs may yield success.
The searching phase of finding a commercial property requires expertise. A group such DeVono Cresa with local knowledge would be worth contacting if you’re not confident enough in finding somewhere yourself.
Wherever you eventually choose to lease, it should tick more than just the affordability box: it should be easy to get to for all your employees, too. In London, look for properties that are within no more than 15 minutes’ walk from an Underground station, even if it’s on one of the less well-used lines. Transport For London’s Tube Map will give you an idea of where to search.
If that isn’t feasible, see if there are any major bus routes that go near the office. Parking is a must too – it should have a few spaces at least, while a bike shed or post would be an added bonus. On the topic of convenience, you should think about how easy the office is to get to for customers. If it’s in a part of London that’s well-connected, all the better. Do some research before leasing.
Lastly, look at what competition you have in your chosen part of the city. If there is a high volume of competing businesses in the part of London you want to lease in, look elsewhere.