PO Box 706, Allenwood, NJ 08720

Phone: 732-292-6000

Fax: 732-701-3618

How to determine how much office space you need.

You need to plan carefully when you calculate how much office space you need. Either too much, or too little space can be budget breakers. Having the wrong space can interrupt your business or make it difficult to operate, but there are some techniques you can employ to get it just right.  First, you need to assess your current situation, and then decide what your expectations are for the growth of your business over the next few years. Ask yourself the following questions:

  • How many people do I currently employ?
  • Does each employee need an individual desk or is sharing possible?
  • Do I expect to add any staff in the next couple of years?
  • Over what period of time will I add the staff?
  • What kind of staff will I be adding, executive, administrative, or sales?

Knowing how many people you employ now helps you estimate how much space you need today to operate your business comfortably; building in your anticipated growth helps you expand your business without costly interruptions.

In general, the amount of office space you need is estimated according to head count and your industry type. The customary range for office space is 150-350 square feet (SF) per person employed. It is the type of space you need to accommodate your business that plays a large part in narrowing that range. At the lower end of the range is the open space plan, which has no private offices. Call centers and sales offices generally use this configuration and have desks or workstations grouped together. At the high end of the range is the traditional hard-wall or private office layout. Law offices, for example, have almost all private offices, large conference rooms and support rooms such as libraries, kitchens and file rooms. You need to determine what type of office layout suits your business best; open space, private office or a combination of both. This will allow you to accurately estimate the amount of space you will need during the term of your lease. 

In the initial planning process, you can estimate you will need approximately 250 square feet per person and it will provide a rough estimate of your office space needs to begin shopping for space. You can refine that further when you start narrowing down your selections and laying out your space. Many variables, in addition to the type of space you select, play into the amount of space you need, such as floor size of the building, loss factor, or amenities in the property.

 At a later point, when you have narrowed down your selection of buildings, a space planner or an interior architect may be a useful part of your team of professionals to help you design the perfect space for your business. But, for your first foray into the office hunt, the general approach of using 250 square feet per person to estimate the amount of space you will occupy is all you need to begin.

 Here’s an Example:

You currently employ 10 people therefore you can estimate you need approximately 2,500 square feet ("SF") of office space today. (250 SF per person X 10 people= 2,500 SF). But, you expect to add 2 new employees each year and you want to sign a three-year lease. Do you need an additional 1,500 square feet today to accommodate your growth plans?

 Answer:

Not necessarily. You need to determine what type of employees you will be adding. If they are senior executives that need private offices then, you will need to add closer to 1,800 square feet, (300 SF X 6 executives= 1,800 SF). But, if they are clerical support staff that will operate in a "bull pen" or open space plan then the need may be as low as 900 square feet, (150 SF x 6 employees = 900 SF) Spending time now estimating your employee growth plans could save you a significant amount of money in the future. Moving your offices mid-lease because you do not have enough space to add necessary staff can be much more expensive than building in your expected growth needs before you sign the lease.

 

From the Blog

  • LPJ Commercial Sells 4814 Outlook Drive, Wall, New Jersey

    4814 Outlook Drive, Wall, NJ FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE WALL, New JERSEY - Lowe, Priestley & Janda Commercial Real Estate, LLC (LPJ Commercial) completes the sale of an investment grade office building. Mary Beth Priestley, Managing Member and Broker of Record has announced that Gary Lowe has completed the sale of a 57,000 square foot multi-tenanted office building located at 4814 Outlook Drive, Wall, New Jersey. The building was purchased a private investment firm and was sold by Commercial Reality & Resources Corp. It was the last remaining asset owned by CR&R located in the Monmouth Shores Corporate Campus, Wall, New...

  • LPJ Commercial Sells 1837 Old Mill Road, Wall, NJ

    1837 Old Mill Road, Wall, NJ FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE WALL, New JERSEY - Lowe, Priestley & Janda Commercial Real Estate, LLC (LPJ Commercial) completes the sale of an office/retail building. Mary Beth Priestley, Managing Member and Broker of Record has announced that Gary Lowe has completed the sale of a freestanding 15,200 square foot vacant office/retail building, 1837 Old Mill Road, Wall, New Jersey. The unit was purchased a local investor/developer who plans to renovate the building and lease the building to commercial tenants. The building on 1.5 acres of land sold for $1,950,000 or $128.00 per sq. ft. Gary...

Other Pages