Stay up to date with the latest in commercial real estate
If you get distracted easily working from home and you're biding your time till you can upgrade to an office space or co-working arrangement, you may find yourself working from a neighborhood Starbucks often. The wi-fi's reliable, they're generally well-lit, and the music's not bad. But working from a Starbucks in itself can be pretty distracting - and expensive. Depending on the location and time of day, they can be noisy and chaotic, and they're not exactly known to be healthy for the budget. Here are seven hacks for spending less, getting more, and making Starbucks more like your personal office.
At TheSquareFoot, we often serve clients in the tech and finance industries. Each type of client has historically been attracted to a very different style of office space. Tech companies implement an open office filled with ping-pong tables, wall decals, standing tables, and massage chairs. In fact, ping-pong tables are so ingrained in startup culture that some see declining ping pong table sales in Silicon Valley as a indication the tech bubble may soon pop. Finance companies opt for a more utilitarian approach - an open office with rows of desktop computers and a television on the wall continuously set to MSNBC.
Now that summer's officially here, the annual office summer party can't be too far behind. Whether you work at a small company or an enterprise giant, you know that treating everyone to a night of free drinks and food at a swanky hotel downtown can be pretty expense. Five-digit expensive. If it brings colleagues closer together, makes people appreciate the company, and introduces a jolt of happiness into work life, going big on a summer party can well be worth it. Unfortunatley, it's not always possible to budget the thousands of dollars it takes throw a full-blown extravaganza. Not to worry. With a few inexpensive moves you can throw a feel-good party for the ages.
The numbers say that if you're reading this post, you probably don't get Summer Fridays, that most revered perk that only about 30% of companies offer employees. 30% is a healthy number by all accounts, but it does mean a majority of working professionals don't get the luxury of clocking out early and beating traffic out of town or waking up late and forgetting about work for a day. And it is a luxury. While plenty of evidence points to a lighter work load actually boosting productivity, some businesses simply find the idea of forfeiting an entire day or half day of work (er, opporunity) untenable. After all, if your clients don't take Fridays off, should you? So if you find yourself and your team schlepping to the office every Friday between Memorial Day and Labor Day, here are five ways to bring Summer Friday chill with you.
We’ve all seen pictures of or, if you're lucky enough, maybe even have been in a cool office. We’re talking about a really cool office. At Google’s headquarters, also known as the Googleplex, employees have access to amenities such as professional masseurs, a slide, and not one but two swim-in-place pools. Over at Facebook’s Menlo Park headquarters you’ll find gorgeous artwork (much of which is spontaneously created by employees), incredible (and free) dining options, and a 9 acre park that features over 400 trees on the roof.
You’re a small but growing company wishing it had a space to call home: for client meetings, internal meetings, quicker access to collaboration and recruiting exceptional talent. Maybe you’ve done a few rotations on co-working desks or managed well enough with some team members working from home. But you’re entering a phase of maturity that requires a tighter operation, one greatly aided by convening your team in a functional headquarters. When should you start shopping around for an office? Believe it or not, the question of how soon you should start looking for one has something of an objective answer. Starting with when you should not start looking.
If you're shopping around for Manhattan office space, you may have noticed something; it's even more bewildering than finding an apartment. How are you supposed to know which size office is the right size for your company? Who are you supposed to contact to inquire about available office space? The landlord? Would a broker be more efficient? And why are there no pictures of office space interiors for you to browse before deciding which places to visit? Here we'll reveal a few secrets to navigating the tricky world of commercial real estate in Manhattan.
Now that the summer months are upon us, many companies are reaching to turn down the thermostat and ramp up the A.C. As you reach for your coat or cardigan to cover up your goosebumps, you secretly start wondering if White Walkers have taken over your office. Sometimes companies use a heavy-hand when it comes to room temperature adjustment, and often times they overcompensate. In fact, Co.Design reports that 60% of workers said they were either too hot or too cold in a study of government office buildings. Beyond causing you slight discomfort throughout the day, a Business Insider article suggests that your freezing office can actually undermine your work performance and sabotage your professional success.
Flatiron isn't exactly known as a haven of hip or a foodie's dream, but it is at the heart of New York's growing tech scene, which means hundreds of thousands of caffeine-craving zombies stalking its streets every day. In the coffee department, it doesn't really have a choice other than to step up. And step up it has. In addition to housing a number of familiar chains, Flatiron coffee shops feature some of the most unique uses of commercial space in the city. So if you're burnt out on Starbucks or simply looking for a new nook to escape to, check out four of the best Flatiron coffee shops in the neighborhood.
For New York coffee fans, the Chelsea Blue Bottle, Birch and Think outposts are probably well-worn destinations. But there's more to Chelsea's coffee scene than the reliably great aformentioned chains, and this series is about great coffee shops -- not just great coffee. Here's a look at 5 of the best Chelsea coffee shops in the game that might have slipped your radar.
If you're like us, most mornings you need coffee, and you need it now. Chances are you have a go-to coffee spot already, one that knows your order even before you do and delivers with accuracy and care most of the time. Even so, a little change can good for the soul, especially with so many great choices in New York's Financial District (or FiDi for short). Here a 8 spots to try on your next coffee break.
In New York Commercial Real Estate, office landlords commonly ask tenants to sign what is called a “Good Guy Guarantee” as part of the lease. This is essentially a one-page document stating that if the tenant stops paying rent while still occupying an office space and refuses to leave, the landlord has the right to take legal action personally against the lease holder in a court of law. At first you might read this and think “wait, do I want to sign anything stating that a landlord can take me to court?” But as you will read below, the document is really just stating “If I know that I wont be able to pay my rent in the future, I will let the landlord know ASAP.” And in doing so, you will have acted in good faith, or as a “Good Guy." But landlords can't always count on tenants acting in good faith, so when they feel it necessary, they will adopt additional means of protection. Below is one example each of how a "Good Guy" scenario and a "Bad Guy" scenario can play out.
Offices are our thing at TheSquareFoot, and trust us when we say that they come in all shapes and sizes with team members of all different personality types. Since Tuesdays are tough, we've come up with a list of some of our favorite TV offices of all time. See how you and your team compare.
Do you love to prank your coworkers? Are you always looking for a good laugh? Then we have you pinned as the office clown. As the office clown, you're probably not looking for the trendiest office supplies, but your coworkers love your unforgiving sense of humor. Here's what you need to keep the laughs coming (oh, and stay productive).
Let’s face it, we’re in our offices for around 90,000 hours during our lives. That’s a lot of time to spend at a desk, even more so if you hate it. Luckily for you there are some pretty rad desk supplies that can keep you organized and “aesthetically pleased” all at the same time. We’re starting a new series that features office supplies for different types of personalities, and first up is for the trendsetters amongst us. How to know if you fit the type: You’re the one to push the limits on casual Friday by wearing joggers, you’ve turned your tech team away from tshirts and jeans and towards Bonobos, and your Spotify playlist ”is lit."
Company culture. Perks. To the jaded professional, these can seem like cheap bouqets designed to placate and distract employees from other, more serious company deficiencies, like secretly Draconian management or quietly failing business. In reality, there's seldom anything inconsequential - or cheap, for that matter - about the perks a company offers. Our latest foray into changing work attitudes finds that, when it comes to employee happiness, you can never invest too much. Here are a few highlights:
You might have heard, either through the proverbial grapevine or friends in a similar position, that a sublet is the way to go for office space, especially if you're a young company. Makes sense. Subleases tend to be shorter-term agreements, like a year or two, and they often come cheaper than a standard lease between you and a landlord. Savings can range between 15% to 40% under typical vacant office market rates. Why on earth wouldn't you jump all over a sublease? Here are a few scenarios to be wary of.
Dog-friendly offices may be on the rise, but rare is the workspace that houses enough pets to fill out a new sales division. Then again, nothing about Bark & Co. is typical. The subscription dog accessory startup just came up with a fresh round of funding, has grown rapidly to a size of 150 employees in New York, and now takes up 5,000 sq. ft. over two floors in a building in Chinatown.
While most of the lore in NYC’s tech scene is concentrated in “Silicon Alley,” nearby Brooklyn is arguably just as startup-friendly and has some bona fides all its own. Brooklyn is home to powerhouses like HUGE, Livestream, Etsy and of course, a member of the “unicorn” club, VICE, to anchor a dynamic startup scene. But beyond the heavy-hitters, Brooklyn’s emerged as a vital incubator of tech talent as well, particularly the Brooklyn Tech Triangle. With hundreds of VC-backed startups that have raised funds in the vicinity of $1B, is Brooklyn the next logical home for your startup? It may be if the following applies to you:
When touring space that could potentially serve as your future office, you can never ask too many questions. Between the listing agent, your broker, and the landlord's broker (if present) you will have a wealth of knowledge at your fingertips about the space's history, amenities and condition. Don't be shy about using that knowledge base to get the nitty-gritty on the spaces you visit! Some details you and your broker will cover automatically include whether or not a build-out is required, who pays for the build-out, and the space exclusive to your use (aka "usable space") vs. the total space you're renting, including all common areas (aka "rentable space"). But for each space, there's a whole laundry list of details you'll want to track in helping you make an informed decision. Here are 10 that can be easy to overlook.
OK. In your hunt for office space, you've toured several commercial spaces and two or three stand out as viable options. They're within budget, the move-in date roughly correspond to your timeline, and the lobby isn't terrible. Are they exactly what you had in mind when you initial began your search? Maybe not, but they have their strengths and are adequate enough to consider as the future home for your business. Adequate enough to make an offer to lease it? Yes. Here's why.
We've all seen the stats and read the stories; when it comes to supporting diverse talent, Silicon Valley has a less than stellar track record. So what is it doing to address the issue? While much of the diversity debate in Silicon Alley is focused on hiring and retention at large companies, one marketing tech company is partnering with Girls in Tech to approach it from a different angle.
Now why, you might be wondering, would I want to watch a show about offices? Offices are about as exciting as a trip to the mailbox, and if you work in one, even the charms of well-designed office space might very well be lost on you. If that's your stance, you'll be pleased to know our new show Square Footage isn't really about office space. Yes, there will be shots of snack bars and nap rooms. But it's not just for show. Something transformational is happening in the halls of the world's most innovative companies.
It's true, finding office space and then haggling for the best possible lease might be a bite-sized hell, but let’s be honest, it’s a good problem to have. If you’re looking for more space, it means your company is starting to scale, you’re bracing for a new era of growth, one that can greatly benefit from an office. Commercial real estate has a reputation for being tricky to navigate, a minefield of hidden costs and duplicitous landlords. While that might be hyperbole, enough potential pitfalls exist that even a wary, accomplished entrepreneur is bound to run afoul of a less than optimal deal simply because they don't know better. That's what makes enlisting the services of a commercial tenant broker worthwhile. Without one, you’re operating at a disadvantage. Here’s why.
Ready to stop researching and start looking for your perfect office space?
Find a home for your business
The path to the perfect office starts here.