A small office space in Houston user typically has a need for 3,000 square feet or less. A medium user has a space need between 3,000 square feet and 10,000 square feet, while a large space user needs more than 10,000 square feet.
No office tenant ever fails to consider the amount of rent to be paid or the location of an office space before signing a commercial lease. Most tenants fail to investigate all of the other factors that often make the difference between a satisfactory and unsatisfactory lease.
Well laid out offices in Houston are integral in overall office productivity and good feeling amongst employees and office visitors. It's not just about cramming as much furniture and as many people into a room as possible, but rather organizing everything so that the overall flow of the office layout aides in efficiency and doesn't cause a single stop-gap in the day today operating practices. Below are a few basic pointers to consider when organizing a new Houston office space or transforming an existing area:
Very often these days, LEED is perceived to reflect beauty, efficiency, forward thinking, and modernization. While these things are certainly associated with LEED construction and design, there are some noteworthy disadvantages that should be taken into account prior to building, buying, or leasing LEED offices in Houston.
The city of Houston sure had a good beginning to 2011. Fast Company Magazine named Houston its 2011 City of the Year, which could help the city recruit new businesses and cause a spike in leasing activity. The NCAA Final Four was held at Reliant Stadium, which gave us two great semi-final games (the Final, not so much). And, according to Jones Lang LaSalle's Houston Office Leasing Highlights Q1 report, economic conditions are improving and we're in much better shape than a year ago.
After reading a very informative post on CRE outsider about the future of CRE data, I began to think about an often-debated question among my friends (we are geeks, what can I say). This question revolves around if Houston commercial office space (or anywhere for that matter) is just another commodity (like wheat, coffee, airline tickets, etc.) or if this definition oversimplifies the Houston commercial real estate business. A commodity is defined by Webster’s as “a good or service whose wide availability typically leads to smaller profit margins and diminishes the importance of factors other than price “.
In the midst of exploring all of the different varieties of office work space becoming more readily available in the U.S., I thought this article on individual work areas significantly shrinking over the past 10-15 years was interesting.
After reading this except from a recent BestVendor Blog post, I thought about the short term lease options in Houston -
After checking out the 2011 Q1 Houston office leasing outlook a while back, we knew tenants were gaining confidence as more business owners were willing to lease and renew office space in Houston. While the numbers certainly don’t lie, I wanted to see where some other positive signs were coming from and found this article pertaining to the office furniture industry as well as other service providers, and how they have adjusted during the really tough times. One can imagine how they too took a huge hit when leasing and expansion activity came to a halt across the U.S.
I came across this Houston commercial leasing news item about Boxer Property signing a 20,000 sf lease at its Arena Towers location on Highway 59 and Fondren, and thought I'd share my thoughts on the property.
In this blog post on Globe St, Tony LoPinto (their recruiting expert) discusses recent decisions by Google and Twitter to locate their employees in city locations. He notes that this a new trend, different from days past where technology companies choose offices in suburban locations. Google's purchase of 111 Eight Ave at the end of last year was the largest purchase of commercial real estate by a tenant in US history. Sorry Chevron.
Since we are obsessed with improving the process for finding office space in Houston, it is only natural we also love finding really cool and unique spaces. Every week, we are going to feature a new office space in Houston and our first feature is Primer Grey. Primer Grey is a marketing design firm in Houston and they office in East Downtown Houston (the hip people call it EaDo).
In our attempt to show the world all of the different office leasing options in Houston, we came across another great concept that's perfect for entrepreneurs, start-ups, or anyone looking for their own desk or Houston coworking spaceaway from home.
With the summer winding down (in calendar days, definitely not the heat...), let's take a look at a mid-year office market update and see how Houston stacks up against some other big markets in the country. According to CoStar U.S. office leasing remained very strong, despite slower than expected job growth. As we alluded to in our 2011 Q1 report, Houston office tenants have been taking advantage of very favorable concessions (i.e. giveaways from landlords) and rental rates and upgrading to nicer facilities offering bargain lease terms. The trend seems to be carrying on.
This week we are featuring the office of New Regional Planning, a full service real estate strategy and consulting firm based in Houston. I had heard through the grapevine that New Regional Planning had one of the most unique offices in the entire city, and we were lucky enough to be able to stop by and take a peak. It didn’t disappoint.
This week we are featuring the Houston downtown office space of integratePR, a local public relations and social media firm located on Vine Street in EaDo Houston. TheSquareFoot had the pleasure of visiting integratePR's offices, located in a refurbished industrial-style complex with a historical look and feel. The building, named Vine Street Studios, was originally the Union Transfer and Storage Building built in 1917 and is listed in the National Register of Historic Places by the United States Department of the Interior. There is a total of 57,500 square feet of net rentable office/studio space, plus 25,000 square feet of rentable basement space, for a total of 82,500 square feet. Allie Herzog, Founder and President of integratePR was nice enough to give us a tour of her second story downtown Houston office which has an open concept, exposed air conditioning and lighting ducts, and is encased in red brick.[gallery link="file"]
For an old-school oil and gas town, there is no shortage of awesome office spaces. The coolest thing is no matter how many great spaces we find, they all have their own unique energy and locations. This weeks feature is Culture Pilot, who is accelerating the design and marketing culture in Houston. Not only is their client list impressive (National Geographic and Style channel - to name a couple), but their commitment to Houston and the community is second to none. They work closely with organizations such as TEDx Houston, Support Local Grow Together. Their latest project is SURGE, a new energy accelerator in Houston. This is pretty exciting as this the first of its kind in Houston and has been a very successful model as TechStars, Y-Combinator, and Capital Factory have proved.
Reading through Zag.com and TrueCar’s models, it struck us that car buying and commercial leasing is not all that different. We've already been explaining to people how the search for a commercial lease was changing in the same fashion that the car buying experience did about five to eight years ago. Back then, the average automobile consumer would drive to multiple dealerships, talk to salesmen, talk to their friends, and maybe buy a Kelly Blue Book or Edmunds magazine.The consumer was trying to get educated prior to making a major purchase. Today, the same consumer gets online, learns the process, the sales tricks, the best time to buy, and scans the available options. They arrive at the dealership with a graduate-level education compared to the old way of buying a car. The similarities don’t stop there. When you buy a car, the dealer has an end price in mind and tries to confuse the bottom line by lowering the sticker price, tweaking the down payment, adjusting the interest rate, or a multitude of other variables.
It's always interesting to compare commercial real estate leasing trends from market to market. Different cities and regions produce unique leasing landscapes and a tenant leasing office space in Houston Texas may value certain amenities differently than a tenant leasing space somewhere on the East Coast. According to a recent article in Globe Street, CBRE sent an anonymous survey to decision makers of more than 100 large tenants across the state of New Jersey ranking the most important "must-have" amenities in an office building.
For our first 2012 installment of office space of the week, we are featuring our friends over at Infinity Power Partners, an energy-consulting firm for large consumers of electricity or natural gas. Located in Three Post Oak Central in the Galleria area, Infinity's execs have matched a Galleria corporate & budding energy business culture with their love of big game hunting and flat screen TV's. When it comes to office space in Houston in the Galleria area, Infinity Power Partners has just about the best location possible with it's close proximity to 610 and all the Galleria retail that's within walking distance. Oh, and the views aren't too shabby either....
Noble Energy just signed a 497,000 square foot lease in the former Hewlett Packard building in northwest Houston. That is almost 11.5 acres and they will occupy all 10 floors with plans to expand in the future.
When visiting with small business owners about how their company’s office space plays a role in the business growth and culture, there’s typically a common theme that rears it’s ugly head: too many mistakes are made in the leasing process. Owners and decision makers often make several key mistakes that can end up costing companies significantly down the line and can even cripple their growth rate. Because office rent is the second highest expense the vast majority of companies incur, doing things the wrong way leading up to signing on the dotted line can be devastating and can make any business owner go crazy!
This week we are featuring the offices of a young Houston startup company, SupportChoice, Inc. Located on North Post Oak Rd. near Uptown Park, SupportChoice Founder and CEO Taylor Pipkin and his staff provide on-demand computer support via remote desktop control technology. Offering a host of services, SupportChoice is a great resource for those in need of technical support with the click of a button.
A data services firm is relocating its headquarters from Las Vegas to Dallas, according to reports, underscoring the continued strength of the Dallas office space market.
Austin has become a haven for young workers and entrepreneurs enamored with the prospect of living an urban lifestyle in the heart of a burgeoning city. As a result, local real estate continues to climb in value, putting landlords who own commercial real estate in Austin in a position to benefit.
This week we're featuring a really unique space in the Houston Montrose area, where RedHouse Associates makes it home. Literally a red house, this Houston city landmark has been completely renovated on the inside and serves as the base to Houston's premier startup Incubator - which provides strategic advice and services to assist young companies in developing business plans, devising product strategies, growing sales organizations, and preparing senior management teams for raising capital and strategic exits.
As if it needed any more validation after getting voted as the 2011 2nd best-selling mater planned community in the United States, The Woodlands keeps getting good news on the commercial side as well. Anadarko recently announced plans to add a second office tower next to its headquarters on Woodlands Parkway. The new tower will hold 550,000 square feet of class A office space and will rise 21 floors above the 10 story parking garage it will sit on. We can certainly assume that the new tower will be constructed using state-of-the-art energy efficiency practices LEED certified. Based on the rendering, it looks like it will be gorgeous.
We had the pleasure of touring CultureMap's Houston office space, located on Wood Street in East Downtown. Given CultureMap's hip and trendy vibe, our expectations were high and the offices did not disappoint. With hardwood floors and the sun shining through the windows, the space has a happy, warm tone. The main area of the space includes a spacious open room for the writers to work and a large kitchen, where almost any meal could be prepared. In the back is the living room type set up with great artwork and great looking (and very comfortable!) furniture. We finished off the tour in CultureMap CEO Stephen Newman's office and saw why CultureMap is inspired by great design.
This week we are featuring the offices of SnapStream TV Search, a television monitoring solution that lets you search, clip and save everything you can possibly record on TV. Jon Stewart from The Daily Show uses them to track news throughout the day and find clips for their shows. You can imagine without this technology how burdensome that process would be!
Businesses around the country have heard the drumbeats of cloud computing technology and, for the most part, many have responded by making investments in technology that help more workers perform duties remotely.