Flexible office space is a great option in a tough economy

January 21, 2009

I was reading the New York Times online today and came across an article by Jane L. Levere.  The article was titled “For Tight Times, Office Space on Flexible Terms“.  I thought that Jane did an excellent job providing a summary and insight on the New York Office Space market.  For many of the points brought up in the article, I can confirm that this is also the case for areas in the Seattle Office Space market.  Jane starts the article by stating:

“Despite New York City’s depressed economy, there is a flurry of activity in at least one niche of the real estate industry: business center companies, also often known as executive suites.”

“Industry officials and observers say business centers — which vary widely in terms of furnishings, services provided and rents charged — are ideal for displaced or downsized businesses or start-up companies seeking space without long-term leases.”

Yesterday, we had a prospect who is looking to downsize from traditional space into thinkspace.  We’ll be able to provide space for exactly what this company needs.  Most companies are not looking for larger space that they can grow into.  They are looking to keep costs under control and not have to deal with fluctuating triple net (NNN) leases.

Kathy Donohue, President of PowerSpace and Services brought up a very good point which definitely resonates with members of thinkspace too:

“…very easy way to do business if you need only one or two offices… You don’t have to lay out capital; the infrastructure is set up; you can lock the door and not worry.”

It was also cool to see Jack Guttman from Green Desk mentioned in the article.  They operate a shared office space that appears to operate using sustainable business practices.  While they didn’t go into it, I’d love to hear from Jack to see if being green is helping his business.  Being green office space is certainly is a huge differentiating factor for us.

Mark Dixon, chief executive of Regus, said that although “demand levels are good,” the company was experiencing “increased levels of move-out.”  I have noticed that we are seeing an uptick of businesses leaving Regus and coming to thinkspace.

I’d like to hear from other shared office or executive office suites in other states whether or not they are experiencing similar types of trends and activity. For us, we are easily having the busiest month by far compared to any prior month in 2008.  We’re also seeing a increase in virtual office members and conference room usage too, a topic that was not even mentioned in the article.




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