A Multi-Family Home

4 Tips When Looking For A Commercial Property

by Arnold Gomez

Are you ready to start your business or expand it to a new location? If so, then you need to make sure you know exactly what you are looking for in commercial property. Choosing the best new location is more than just the size and layout of the building. The following list can help you make a decision that will help your business succeed and grow.

#1: Determine Space and Growth Requirements

Unless you plan to move every few years, the best option is to choose a location that allows for the growth of your business. This could include a site that will allow you to build additions onto your current building, or one that generally has additional suites available. Another option is to choose a property that is slightly bigger than you need, but still within your budget.

#2: Know the Zoning

Knowing that a site is for commercial use is only part of the equation. First, you need to make sure it is zoned for all of your commercial needs. For example, if you manufacture some products on site, you may not be able to work in a property only zoned for retail – even if you also offer retail. Zoning history also matters. If the zoning of the area has changed frequently or if it is likely to change in the future, make sure that your zoning status will be grandfathered in.

#3: Find Out the Owner's History

If you opt to lease instead of buy, you need to know the history of the owner. Does the property frequently change owners? If so, there could be trouble down the road, such as if a foreclosure occurs. Another red flag is if the owner has a history of financial troubles, such as foreclosures on other properties or bankruptcies.

#4: Look for Hidden Site Issues

You may be responsible for any updates necessary to get the site usable and up to code, especially if you purchase the property outright. This means look for obvious issues first, such as whether or not the building is handicap accessible. Also look for major structural issues, such as cracks in the walls, uneven pavement, or a crumbling foundation. If you don't want to budget for repairs such as this, there is no reason to consider properties with obvious issues.

#5: Talk to the Neighbors

Neighboring businesses may be the best way to vet a potential property, especially if you are opening a retail location. They can give you insight into the local customer base, average amounts of traffic, and known problems in the area. Even non-retail businesses should consult with the neighbors, though. For example, if an area is prone to vandalism or has a problem with transients, your neighbors can let you know.

For more information, contact a company like Realty Executives.