Commercial property managers come in all shapes and sizes, from landlords who own office spaces to rent, to large businesses that own shopping malls and rent out store space to various brands. As such, contracts can be organized in many different ways, from monthly leases to rental contracts that last years.
In general, how you structure your own rental agreement in line with commercial law is up to you, and it pays to offer a competitive package that will inspire businesses to remain with you for years. As the landlord or commercial property manager, you will also be responsible for various other custodial duties that can help the building and business within function appropriately.
Moreover, sometimes this cost is passed on in part to some of your commercial tenants in the form of upkeep or service charges depending on how the contract is arranged. While we cannot give specific advice relating to your specific arrangement, we believe some universal guidance for enhancing the tenant experience will help you remain relevant, keep hold of your commercial clients, and benefit in the long term as a result. With that in mind, please consider:
Fiber-optic internet, room for both desktop computers and desks for easy laptops and laptop dock integrations, private meeting spaces that may be soundproofed depending on need, accessible loading bays for companies ordering essential resources, all of this can help you sustain companies of now and the future.
In some cases, modernizing your amenities may mean focusing on sustainable solutions such as the implementation of solar panels – with so much square footage to cover, this can often be a worthwhile investment.
App sign-ins for the building itself, digitized maintenance ledgers, and smart features such as smart cameras at each.
Developing essential metrics for safety is essential when managing any business. For example, commercial roof repair for leak detection and prevention will ensure that even in heavy weather, your building will remain secure, will never damage equipment or inventory, and allows businesses to operate with no downtime or need for emergency renovations.
Safety also comes from stringent evacuation infrastructure, such as multiple exits, great lighting, alarm panels where needed, and more – working with your local fire inspectors to make sure you match all regulations is key.
Of course, there are also additional responsibilities when it comes to opening your doors to the public, be that for retail or event purposes. Essential signposting is key here, as is hiring premises security and chaperones where appropriate. This can be factored into the rental cost or become implemented on a case-by-case basis, where personnel are recruited based on particular event capacities.
Maintenance firms that have access to your electrical systems, elevator and escalator upkeep, cleaning, and garbage collection are key to bring in. Large buildings rarely take care of themselves, and the footfall traffic, especially if open to the public, can deteriorate open areas rather quickly.
As such, having routine maintenance plans in place, as well as emergency maintenance firms on call, can help you resolve matters cleanly and prevent issues from developing. Maintenance may also need to be scheduled for off-peak times, such as refitting certain fire alarm services at night when the building is closed.
Maintenance outfits can also be hired on a one-off basis to renovate for future provisions, such as equipping the business with fibre optic infrastructure for access to gigabit internet speeds and faster. When you have cutting-edge provisions, cutting-edge firms, big and small, are more likely to rent commercial real estate through you.
Engaging Common & Shared Areas
Even if you rent separate spaces to many businesses, like segmented offices to a range of start-ups, odds are the common areas will be used by all. For this reason, making sure they’re set up to handle the correct amount of people is important.
Staff kitchens that can be divided by the number of companies sharing space is key, as is seating, wide staircases and elevators for accessibility purposes, as well as lockers or storage areas for security.
Keep them engaging, with sofas, coffee tables, good lighting, ventilation, and resources provided where appropriate (like free coffee throughout the day). This adds a sense of community to your space, while also allowing segmented companies to properly integrate with one another, preventing your rented offices or suites from becoming isolated caves.
However, it’s also important to consider how public-facing areas will be planned for convenience, accessibility, and security. Designing a main reception and waiting area that can hold guests until they’re ready to be called is key, as is having rounded seated for easy conversations.
Of course, depending on the style of the building, your approach may differ, but don’t pull investment from these essential areas. Moreover, premises like this often live and die based on the condition and quality of their restroom areas – ensuring privacy, hygiene at every level, and capacity are considered.
It might be that you host several stores or offices within your building, but it’s nice to give some dominion to the companies renting that space. From acrylic 3D signposting where companies can rent and present branding space, to exterior signposting that proudly displays the logos of companies within your premises, promoting and labelling involved companies really will make a big difference.
This kind of presence not only helps you become an ambassador of your tenant’s brands, but they in kind promote you own commercial premises, ensuring its relevance. Personalized presence might also mean offering switchboard connections to each office with custom messages for each, or allowing them to design their office decorations when that’s necessary.
Personalized presence is about giving your tenants some autonomy, to feel respected in the space, and ultimately to have more reason to reside there. This way, your premises becomes a staple of a particular brand, and that can be healthy.
Lease Terms & Flexibility
Depending on how you structure the rental contracts with each brand, you may have more or less wriggle room to work with. However, favorable flexibility that gives advantage to certain firms hoping to make use of your office space can be worthwhile.
You may offer three-month contracts for co-working space, a subscription system, or maybe yearly contracts depending on how the infrastructure of your business runs. Make sure to consider exactly what business you’re trying to appeal to. Start-up firms renting offices will often do so if they can bring their team together for an affordable, flexible package, as otherwise they’re quite happy to remote work.
You may decide to implement scaleable, modular packages, for instance giving startups the chance to rent co-working office space and to pay for meeting room access on certain days when they need it. All basic amenities like access to the common areas and waiting rooms should be provided as standard, of course.
If you host stores within your brand, then sometimes you may work with multi-year deals that provides brands a place to store their inventory safely, as well as access to loading bays and more. Generally, the more flexibility you allow, the more clients will stay with you, which sounds paradoxical but, ironically, is often the case.
Organize Promotions & Special Events
It’s good to develop your business as an up-to-date, interesting, and worthwhile space that stays dynamic throughout the year. Depending on the kind of commercial property you run, you may allow for trade events to host there each year, rent space to startups for a discount cost to develop the culture of entrepreneurialism within the space, or allow companies to run their own public-facing promotions where appropriate.
This helps the space remain interesting, and less of a fixed entity, but more of a premises and tool companies can leverage to get the best of their brands. An event space, cross-promotions with hotels, restaurants and larger parking garages near you can make a big difference.
Of course, many motorists worry about where and when they’ll park that day, so the more you can offer those essential provisions with goodwill, the better. Negotiating contracts with local multi-story parking services can be useful, as if your tenants gain a discount, they’re more likely to keep coming back as opposed to using remote work as their default option.
Parking also means keeping your parking areas in good condition if you’re lucky enough to have them, from installing security checkpoints in and out to implementing lighting fixtures for safe travel at night, and one-way systems to reduce the chance of collisions or accidents. Parking can also make use of good signposting to welcome new visitors or help you carefully divide space out between certain clients taking up the space. Of course, disabled and VIP parking areas are also worth implementing, the former most of all.
With this advice, you’ll be able to keep innovating and building on the tenant experience as a commercial property landlord. It might seem as though these investments are optional now, but the more you leverage, the better your clientele will be, and the more they’ll have to offer you in kind.