With a boom in co-working across the world, getting the best deal on the space you occupy and understanding the small print is top ticket for flexible leasing. Before signing on the dotted line, ask yourself these key questions to make sure you get the most out of your flexible workspace:
- What space do you get? Will it be the same desks/offices every day or is it just first-come-first-served? Does the arrangement meet your specific technology security and confidentiality requirements? Does the provider guarantee you the space?
- For how long are you tied in? Can you leave early, and if so is any deposit refundable or a minimum fee still payable?
- Can the provider evict you early?
- Can you stay in the space for longer, or take more space? If you can, what will it cost you to do so and what can or should you agree upfront?
- Is any deposit payable when you sign the contract? What must you do to get it back at the end?
- Can your staff enter the building or the working space immediately, and what can you do in advance to save time on the first day?
- Do you pay extra for office services (e.g. printing, scanning, photocopying, telephones, internet data services and IT support) and refreshments? If so, what can or should you negotiate in advance to keep control of the bills?
- What “hidden” costs might the provider seek to pass on to you, and is there anyone else who might seek to charge you directly for something?
- Do you need to bring your own IT equipment/telecoms cables etc. into the space? If so, do you have all the rights you need, or is a third party (e.g. the provider’s landlord) also going to have to be involved? Make sure you can arrange everything before you commit to taking the space otherwise you might end up paying your provider for space you can’t use.
- Finally, are there hidden traps in the agreement? Clauses on things like anti-money laundering, bribery and corruption, the use of brokers are often found there.
Ever wondered what PropTech was all about? Our PropTech event on Thursday 4 October will decode what it’s really about and how to stay ahead of the game. If you are interested in attending please contact Lauren.Boyle@hoganlovells.com
Find us at what3words