How to find an empty commercial property

Finding commercial property at the right price can be a huge asset for your business. Find out why it's never been a better time for business owners to find empty commercial property.

In the Autumn 2013 statement, the Government announced reoccupation relief of a 50% business rates discount for 18 months for businesses moving into previously empty retail premises between 1 April 2014 and 31 March 2016. This isn't the only reason why smart businesses are moving into empty business premises. The commercial property market has moved on in recent years and now presents a valid way to escalate your business.

Shopping preferences and retail experiences are changing, but consumers still value human interaction, face-to-face advice and shopping experiences. Act quickly to benefit not just from reoccupation relief, but from some great deals which are probably a result of the commercial property market coming out of a long period of tough economic challenges. Property can take SMEs to the next level, be a great asset and investment, and help launch your business onwards.

Oversupply of retail units and older office spaces has meant that there are great deals to be had. Landlords tend to be a little more flexible with properties which need modernising or which are in less than prime locations. If you are looking for a smaller retail unit or office space, you can often get better deals, as you are taking over space which is in less demand than larger units.

Landlords don't want empty properties on their hands, and will often offer unusual deals to avoid paying business rates and maintenance costs on an empty unit. Property owners themselves tend to be even more flexible, offering such innovative ways of using commercial space as serviced offices, pop up shops and seasonal retail units for groups of creatives. Whichever way you use commercial space, make sure your commercial insurance fully covers you, your stock, your office equipment, and any staff members.

Once you've found your empty commercial property and are happy with the deal, ask a professional to check the documentation before you sign. Make sure the terms you have discussed are all there and that no long-term costs have been added.

Finally, you’ll need commercial insurance for your new premises. Speak to an insurance company with experience in arranging insurance for commercial premises. And make sure the policy you choose provides you with cover for your employees, your premises, your equipment and stock.

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