In reality, any business can find a space without help. You can search the internet and if you are lucky you can find a ‘plug and play’ opportunity with furniture, cabling and pretty much everything you need already in place to run your business.
However, if a company is serious about:
- Negotiating the most favorable rent and economic terms
- Finding the perfect space
- Designing/Customizing the buildout
- Putting the technology in place to be relevant for years into the future
– then a team of vendors should be established. The goal of this post is to provide companies with a list of the types of team members to think about hiring. Not all of the vendors below are needed to find and complete the perfect space. Also, (disclaimer) my lists of vendor options to consider are by no means all encompassing.
Broker/Tenant Representative – A good tenant representative will help find the space, negotiate the most favorable lease terms, and manage many of the other vendors. For more reasons to hire a tenant representative see this post (Why use a tenant representation specialist) and for things to think about when hiring sombebody see this post (Top 5 things to look for when selecting a tenant representation specialist), or the ‘about’ section of this blog :).
Architect/Designer – An architect should be brought in early on to help with space programming and to develop initial test fits (or space plans) for the various options being considered. An architect will provide construction drawings for permitting. Finally, architects help with finish design so that the office space fits the brand and atmosphere that a business is trying to create. A list of architect recommendations is here.
Real Estate Attorney – When acquiring office space, a real estate attorney can be very helpful in negotiating your lease or real estate contract. Some options for real estate attorneys are here.
Construction Manager – A construction manager will help with planning the overall budget for an office buildout and move. They will also manage the architect and contractor to make sure that the buildout is completed on time and on budget. Depending on the complexity of the project, a construction manager is not always required. However they can be extremely valuable should the project be of significant size. A list of CM recommendations is here.
Contractor – Before a contractor is hired it is important to get 3 competitive bids. There are many options for contractors, but make sure to understand which are approved in a given building. Here are some options for contractors of various sizes.
Voice/Data Cabling – In order to connect your computers and phones to your server room, a cabling vendor is needed. Cabling is very specific to the needs of different businesses. The process of installing cabling for voice data will take place in the final two weeks of the construction project. Some ideas for people to consider are here but this list is only a small sample of options.
Audio Visual – AV is another aspect of building out space that is very specific to each company. Projectors, TV’s, and presentation equipment are installed by an AV vendor and some ideas for people to call are here.
Furniture – Whether you decide to re-use furniture or buy new, here are some options for furniture vendors to consider.
Moving – there are many commercial moving companies in Seattle but here are some options.