Posted on Friday, September 25th, 2020

Shared office spaceStarting your own business can be one of the most daunting yet exciting things you can do in life. Perhaps the most daunting of obstacles you’re going to face is finding how to pay for your office space. Many states may require you to have a commercial office if you are bringing in employees or producing certain products. This can put a heavy financial burden on you and thus the reason why so many small businesses opt-in for the shared office space route. What does that mean exactly? Shared office space means your business is essentially working side-by-side with another business within the same office space. Sharing office space can be very cost-effective but can also produce other issues in terms of legality. Therefore, the following list includes a couple of things to consider before agreeing to share an office space.

Maintenance Responsibilities

When sharing an office space with another business, the division of the maintenance responsibilities will need to be addressed amongst the two businesses. Commercial Real Estate Attorneys in Orlando FL highly recommend having these responsibilities integrated within the lease or within a separate maintenance agreement to ensure that you aren’t solely responsible for an unexpected repair bill later down the line. It is also recommended to consult with your Nishad Khan, PL, Orlando Real Estate Attorneys to ensure that all demands and responsibilities agreed upon are specifically set forth within that lease or that separate maintenance agreement as well.

Distribution of Floor Space

Contrary to popular belief, not all shared office spaces are going to be divided equally amongst the two companies. Some might be 70/30 or 60/40, to name a few. Many commercial real estate lawyers in Orlando will advise that the two companies clearly delineate which company will be entitled to which space within the shared office space. It is important for the two companies to determine this information before signing any papers to lease the office space. The last thing you want, as a business owner, is to show up at the new office space thinking that you have all this room for activities, only to find out that you really don’t. Communicating with both the other company and the building owner or landlord is critical to obtaining the floor space you require to properly conduct your business.

Common Spaces

common areaReal estate agents will often show business owners office spaces that suit, not only their own production needs, but the needs of the business’ employees as well. These amenities usually include break rooms, kitchens, and storage areas, to name a few. These may also be referred to as common spaces within the office space. As a business owner, these common spaces are very useful to have, but what happens if you are sharing a space with another company? Who has rights to these common spaces? Who can utilize these common spaces? Can anyone just go in and utilize those common spaces? Or is one of the business owners hoping to utilize certain common spaces to meet their own business needs? Orlando residential real estate attorneys warn not to assume that these spaces are equally distributed and for anyone’s use. Real Estate Attorneys in Orlando FL, advise their clients to ensure that this is discussed with the other party in order to come to terms with the usage & responsibilities of these spaces and to memorialize the agreed upon terms in a writing that is signed by the businesses that are sharing the office space.

Making Big Changes

No matter if you’re using 50% of the space or 30%, any major changes to the floor space should be discussed with the other party and the building owner or landlord. This is done to determine how much each person is going to pay for those changes and how those changes are going to affect current working conditions within the office space. Orlando Real Estate Lawyers highly recommend that business owners discuss these issues in detail as you could end up paying for something that you aren’t benefiting from. On the other end of the spectrum, you may find yourself paying too much for an equally shared addition.