Starting your own business is exhilarating. And an important piece of the puzzle is having the dedication to plan for every cost associated with your new venture. Real estate is a standard item in a small business plan, but it can be easy to overlook the peripheral costs that come with securing an office space.
Once you’ve decided whether you’ll be buying or leasing property, check out my tips below to make sure you’re planning for all of your real estate costs appropriately.
Property management, maintenance, and security
It’s important for you to determine early on which management and maintenance tasks are covered by your landlord, which are covered by individual tenants, and which specifically you will need to cover. When you understand upfront how these costs are divided, you’ll be able to plan for them over the long-term.
If your business will be in an building shared with other tenants, you may see finance charges and capital costs listed as “operating expenses.” Review these line items carefully: in many cases, these should be qualified as capital expenditures and not passed along to tenants. Reviewing this clause early will help you determine any actual operating expenses to account for.
Taxes are a standard consideration in any business plan, but there are a couple things to consider about taxes as they relates to your real estate. First, are taxes incorporated into your monthly lease payment? And, if the property is sold and the tax value increases, will your payment increase? Open conversations with your real estate professional and your landlord will help you navigate these and other tax questions.
After hours activity
When you’re in startup mode, it’s easy to lose track of the hours and days. That’s why you need to diligently review any clauses in your lease agreement that relate to after hours or non-standard business day activity. Accepting deliveries or using building services during these off times can incur additional costs for you, which you’ll need to account for.
Do you have questions about starting your business in Tampa? Contact me or leave a comment below!
Image: Seattle Municipal Airport
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