What You Can And Can't Do When Renting Temporary Office Space
Jan 12 2016
Businesses are living concepts owing to the fact that they are fuelled and guided by people. For this reason, a company’s requirements often change as it grows and expands. However, there are instances in which alterations to your office may be a necessity from the outset, however this isn’t always acceptable when renting temporary office space.
Once you have outlined a potential problem or modification or if you simply wish to update the appearance of your office; before proceeding with any alterations, you should discuss the changes with your landlord. It may be the case that legally, within your lease agreement, you are entitled to make a certain change. Nevertheless, it is good practice to keep your landlord informed of any changes you plan to make.
What alterations can you make when renting temporary office space?
By law, your company is required to make reasonable provisions for any disabled employee. This may include a ramp, modifications to the toilet/bathroom and the width of doors. If your building needs modifications in order to accommodate such features, you should speak with your landlord and gain written permission before proceeding with the alterations.
If the landlord is unwilling to approve the changes that need to be made; it is worth seeking advice from a professional body to ensure that the quandary is dealt with in accordance to legal guidelines and in the most efficient and diplomatic manner.
Most companies have a colour scheme associated with their brand, which is often featured within the workspace in some form. When renting temporary office space, it may state within your contract that there are limitations as to where you can decorate, however there are ways in which you can incorporate the colour scheme around the workplace. Wall hangings are sometimes an option, or if you have a waiting area or communal area with soft seats, scatter cushions are another way to add a splash of colour. Even minute details such as pencil pots and company mugs allow for a subtle reference to the company’s design.
Drilling / Pinning holes
Before you drill holes for interactive boards, ideas boards, or wall hangings, you should discuss your plans with the landlord. This is not just for clarification on the terms in your lease agreement, it is also an important safety measure. Without knowing the wiring of a building, you could quite easily drill into, and hit, a live wire, which could cause a serious if not fatal injury.
When renting temporary office space for your business, if your lease is classed as a ‘full repair and insuring lease’ – which most types of lease are – you are responsible for any of the repairs made on the building, and often your rent will reflect this. There are some exceptions which are dependent on the overall state of the building and the type of commercial property. But it is worth remembering that you will be expected to leave the building in a good state after your tenancy is over.
It is your responsibility to ensure your employees’ safety at all times. You should regularly test the fire alarms in the building. On moving into a new building, it is worth having a landlord or private company complete a check on the building and discuss with you the best routes for evacuation and any features that require updating.
In your lease agreement when renting your temporary office space, your landlord should have stated if you are allowed any animals on the premises. If the answer is yes, the agreement should also specify any restrictions on the type, breed or size of animal that is allowed.
When presenting your landlord with plans for modifying the building, ensure that your proposal is well thought out. Landlords are far more likely to agree to the changes if there is a logical and justifiable reason to do so. Having an idea of the cost of the project is advisable. If it is a larger proposal, it may be worth having someone draw up some visual plans with dimensions to establish a clear understanding of your ideas with your landlord.
Whether the project is a small undertaking or a larger endeavour, safety is paramount. It is your responsibility to check that any alterations made comply with health and safety laws and standards, and that you keep your employees and yourself safe at all times.
Finally, when looking at renting temporary office space, it is worth seeking legal advice when drawing up the lease contract. Certain aspects can be overlooked and may cause grounds for dispute in the future if clarity is not achieved.