Picture the scene: You’re stuck behind a desk in a pokey spare bedroom at home. There’s Internet, and your favourite coffee mug is never out of reach, but it can be a lonely existence when you have colleagues and clients who are situated in the thick of the action in a city centre or an office space elsewhere.
Of course, thanks to modern technology we can all ensure that we’re better placed to stay productive in the world of business, no matter what we’re doing for a living. Thanks to email, Internet, video conferencing and all the rest of it, there’s really no excuse for not being able to network effectively in the modern business world.
Having said that, there is still no replacement for the word of mouth contact that often results in generating new business leads or boosting your existing client base. When it comes to home working, then this can be one of the main drawbacks, although many of us also have to situate our desk space activities in less than satisfactory surroundings too.
Indeed, some home workers have been known to work in their garage in order to get their own productivity space. No matter what modifications you’ve made to these sorts of surroundings, it’s a far from ideal setup. If you’re in this kind of scenario then perhaps it’s time to consider taking a new direction entirely.
Renting an Office Space: Who Does it?
One of the main things to think about if you’re running any kind of business is where to have it located. If you’re a sole trader, freelancer or someone who doesn’t have any employees then working from home is often seen as the way forward. After all, it can be a cheap and cheerful way of keeping overheads to a minimum.
However, increasingly a large number of people who have a business to run are finding that renting office space is a great way of pushing their business forward. Even though the recession continues to rumble on, this has been good for people on the lookout for a place to work as rents are cheap and prime locations are plentiful.
Why Rent an Office Space?
While some of us are fine and dandy working from home, it can be a fairly solitary existence. If you rent an office in a handy location, either in a city centre or on a purpose built business park, then it can be easy to get to and you’ll find that the benefit of having lots of like minded people around you can be perfect for improving productivity.
In fact, considering that networking is one of the best ways of getting more business then simply being able to chat with other people on a daily basis means that you will be in a much better position to secure extra work if it comes up. Renting office space is not only cheap and convenient, it can also free up more of your time too.
For starters, having a desk in an office block run by a landlord will allow you to come and go at your leisure, while you won’t have to worry about upkeep of the surroundings or cleaning either. Any decent office rental worth its salt should also have amenities, including high-speed broadband internet, that’ll also help boost your productivity.
The Convenience Factor
Add all of these factors together and you’ve got a good argument for moving into a rented office. Another aspect of the desk or office space rental option is that many locations are in very popular areas. This can be a great attraction to prospective new clients, and can also make a great meeting place for existing ones too.
What’s more, chances are that you’ll be situated in a postcode that’ll also look good on your letterheads and also your website. So, alongside increasing productivity, you’ll also be able to add an extra veneer to your growing business and hopefully move up to the next rung of the ladder to success.
Sign me up?
So, adding all of these factors together then there is certainly a case for considering the office or desk space rental options that are out there. You can quickly compare and contrast what’s available using the online comparison websites that have sprung up in recent years. These work in a similar way to searching out a broadband or mobile phone deal.
The benefit of the desk or office space rental options that are available is that many operate on short-term contracts, usually on a rolling basis. This means that you’ll have more flexibility and don’t have to commit to signing up for a deal in a particular location if you’re not sure what lies ahead.
In this relatively uncertain economic climate, this can be a real bonus, allowing you the ultimate in freedom and flexibility without too much in the way of commitment to your new landlord.
Photo via Flickr.
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Interesting post. I completely agree with the social and networking advantages of renting office space as opposed to working from home. I’m a Graphic Designer and worked from home full-time for 3 years before last April taking the plunge and renting office space not too far away from where I live. The small office space is shared with a photographer who was also in the same situation.
Initially I was concerned about the extra overheads – rent obviously, but also travel, food etc. However the office is in Riverside Studios, so there is a great creative vibe and lots of small set-ups in various areas such as theatre, film and TV, marketing and PR and I soon started networking with other companies. The combination of networking and having a professional commercial address is paying off, and I now easily cover the extra expenses by the work brought in, which I wouldn’t have got working from home. There is an added bonus as well that at the end of the day I can go downstairs to the bar and have a beer by the river after work!
I would recommend to people in a similar situation as I was who are thinking about it to look carefully at where they are thinking of setting up, making sure there are plenty of networking opportunities, and that the space will suit them (I couldn’t have gone to work in a corporate style space). I do believe though that I have benefitted greatly from going from working at home to the office space.
That’s an interesting story, Stuart! We are happy things came out well for you.
Hey Rob, thanks for the great article. I would love to see a follow up on where to find office spaces and what to look for in them.
hi Rob ..
Hi Kevin… Well , i think that a office spaces are depends on how we react at it…
Take over the Mood don’t let the mood take you over..
than you are what you are when you know to control it.
actually i just do bla bla bla… i know nothing at all..
An advantage to having a rented office space is that you then have a space that will put your mind in a “work” mode. When you are in that rented space, your body and mind will get into the routine of working. Then, your home environment is a place to relax and recoop.
Although i still work from home, another reason to rent an office is to have peace.
I assume most of us, working from home, occasionally have to deal with a little less than desired understanding from our family, that lives under the same roof, and expects from us to clean the house, do the chores, and what not, since we’re already at home. And will always think that work is only when you leave home…
It’s also much easier to invite a client to a meeting in your office. I can’t really imagine inviting a client into my home kitchen.
thank you for your info.I have certainly picked up anything new from right here
I have worked from home for about 11 years now and have now started my own business out of my home. I have to say the biggest disadvantage I have seen, and now more then ever, is my inability to shut it down. I think if I were to move my business to rented space I would be able to separate better and leave work at “work”.
As a freelancer I can’t imagine to take the burden of a physical office with a definite time table. I am free to work anywhere in the world and can successfully manage my team around the world. That’s what I call creativity.
i will not invite a client in my home, but I can visit there office if they wish or have a coffee with them in the nearest restaurant. It’s another experience. There is no need to have an office to get the client.
agreed, it just depends on the kind of person you are. I’d go crazy if I was home every day and love having an office even though it’s not strictly necessary for my business. That’s just me, whatever works for ya i say!
Hi all. I’m thinking of starting a business soon and looking for office space.
Just a question:
Do you have to have a business to rent an office or are they available