Commercial Property Search: Choosing the Location of Your Business
Created by FindLaw's team of legal writers and editors | Last reviewed June 20, 2016
Considerations When Conducting a Commercial Property Search
When searching for commercial property, it is important to choose the right location to help ensure the success of a business. Typically, the type of business determines whether location is important to success. For example, picking a good location is essential to a customer-driven business like a retail store or a restaurant. On the other hand, the location of a business is less important if customers will rarely visit the facility. Consider setting up a home office if customers will not visit the location. This can mean savings in rent and a possible tax deduction for the home office space.
The following are a list of things to consider when looking for a commercial property:
- Customer accessibility?
- Is the business location near retail centers and heavily trafficked areas?
- What type of space will you need? A warehouse, a retail space, or a space that can accommodate a food service business?
- What can you afford?
- Does the facility provide adequate services? What other businesses are in the area? Take into account whether other businesses in the area will help attract customers.
- What is the occupancy rate in the area? A sparsely populated business area may indicate that the location is unable to sustain customer growth.
- Consider whether customers and employees will be safe from crime.
How to Attract Customers
Because customer-oriented businesses need to draw in customers in order to be profitable, it is essential to choose the most suitable location for the business. For example, a new business that is tucked away in an out-of-the-way location may find it much more difficult to attract customers than a business in a frequently trafficked area.
- Traffic: A high-traffic area can bring in customers because of its visibility to the public and because of its location.
- Convenience: The easier it is for potential customers to reach the business, the more likely it is for customers to visit the business.
- Parking: Adequate parking that is near the business is essential.If parking is not free, consider whether it is priced reasonably.
- Similar businesses: In some cases, a similar business can draw in customers. For example, opening a clothing store near other clothing stores may bring in customers.
- Reputation of the location: How a neighborhood is perceived may attribute to the type of customers that visit. For example, because Rodeo Drive in Beverly Hills is known for its high-end shops, it generally attracts wealthy shoppers.
Does the Facility Meet the Needs of Your Business?
It's also necessary to make sure that the facility can meet the needs of the business. This will depend on what type of business will be run from the location. If the business is a restaurant or a coffee shop, for instance, the existence of a kitchen in the space is essential because putting in appropriate plumbing and electrical infrastructure can be costly.
Also, consider whether there is enough power to meet the needs of the business. A business that will utilize a lot of electricity from the use of heavy machinery will need to ensure that the facility can handle the required electrical output.
Consider whether the facility has data lines. If so, is it connected to a fiber optic network or is it wired for DSL?
Finally, make sure that the zoning will permit the operation of the business and the activity in the particular location. Avoid signing a lease until it is clear that zoning will permit the use.
Speak to a Lawyer
Conducting a commercial property search requires a combination of perseverance, expertise, and a bit of luck. Speak to business and commercial lawyer today to help you find the best possible location for your new business.
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