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How to find the best space for your startup
Sep 20, 2012
“The basic challenge that anybody faces in finding space is its availability,” says Philip Añonuevo, associate director of Jones Lang LaSalle Leechiu. “As long as there’s space available, the search for the best business location is manageable, though not necessarily easy. It’s because commercial space is always competitive, even in a not so good economy,” he says.
As the country expects to have sizable inventory of commercial spaces in the coming years, companies must be able to find locations that will work well with their business. Here are some tips.
Look for clues. Following where the new developments are could give you hints as to where businesses and communities would be built. You can do it online (“Check off hand whatever’s available out there in the market,” says Anna Katrina Lagman of MyProperty.ph) or go to the construction sites yourself. “Do a bit of legwork, so you can be ahead of other people who might discover it earlier than you,” says Añonuevo.
Know what you need and want. Añonuevo says having a clear idea of the specific features of your desired space makes the search a lot easier. To this end, “we can tell clients where the growth areas are, where the new buildings would be built, when the new buildings would be finished. We can give them estimates of how many people are located in a particular district, and their demographic profile,” he says.
Identify the site’s limitations. “Unlike residential spaces, commercial ones have more limitations,” says Lagman. Know the guidelines regarding the types of businesses allowed by developers and building owners. Make sure the property managers have a good track record in taking care of facilities, and that they can adequately respond to emergencies and needs of the building tenants.
Be open to other options. Not all businesses are fit to be in a business district. Know where your business would thrive. Maybe taking space a few miles away from the center can do you good, especially when it comes to space availability and rent. “A lot of private individuals are developing low-rise buildings,” notes Lagman, noting that they could offer competitive alternatives in terms of location and rent.
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