Should You Buy Or Lease Office Space in Vancouver

June 24, 2010 by · 6 Comments 

Vancouver Office Space in the Burrard Businss District

The Reflection of the Marine Building in Vancouver's Burrard Business District.

Vancouver Office Space: Buy or Lease?

Vancouver is a city that is booming with real estate. When you’re in the market for office space for your business there are a few things that you should think about before making this investment.

With ever-changing office vacancy rates in the city of Vancouver and stock markets globally, it is uncertain what the future may bring. You need to carefully weigh the pros and cons of leasing or buying office space.

Here are some pros and cons of leasing vs. buying in Vancouver.

Pros of Buying Office Space

  • Tax Deductions – the associated costs of owning and running a commercial space can provide expense deductions.
  • Fixed costs – locking in your commercial mortgage can give your business clear, fixed costs.
  • Additional income – owning your office can add the advantage of renting out extra office space and adding more income.
  • A Retirement Fund – the prospect of owning commercial space allows the owner to sell out and fund their retirement.

Cons of Buying Office Space

  • Upfront Costs – buying space usually costs more money upfront which is not practical for new businesses and entrepreneurs.
  • Lack of Flexibility – a new or growing business may experience unexpected needs in the future.

Pros of Office Space Leasing

  • Free-up Working Capital – with your money not tied up, your business can respond to opportunities in the market.
  • More Time – allows more time to focus solely on running your business.
  • Prime Property – leasing allows opportunity to be in a great location with a high image.

Cons of Office Space Leasing

  • Variable Costs – when you lease you may be subject to annual rent increases and higher costs at the time when your lease expires.

  • No Equity – When you lease you are funding someone else’s retirement with your lease payments.

There are pros and cons to both buying and leasing. Making a decision will come down to finances, tax, and personal issues.

Investing In Vancouver Office Space

Here are some simple tips and things to think about before investing in Vancouver office space.

  • Decide How Much to Invest

When considering how much money you should invest in your office space you should think about your present needs, how much you can afford, and whether you wish to use this space as an investment vehicle.

  • Think About Timing

When is the right time to buy or lease an office space in Vancouver? Factors to consider are your personal situations, and “market timing.” Market timing is your judgment of whether the market will be going up or down.

Spring and fall usually have greater market activity, and a wider choice of reasonably priced properties for sale, than summer and winter. However, looking back over many years it is clear that no season is predictably the least expensive time to buy in this area. Sometimes the best time to buy is when nobody else is looking. A little-known secret is that there is usually a noticeable drop in prices at the end of December, creating an opportunity of which very few buyers take advantage.

When looking for an office space in Vancouver the most important thing is that you consider the long run and the needs of your business.

How To Make Your Office Space More Green

April 26, 2010 by · Leave a Comment 

Plants help to make your office environment more green. (Credit: MsCaprikell / cc)

Whether you’re leasing or buying an office space you should consider going “Green.” Making your office more environmentally friendly can actually save you money and reduce your company’s ecological footprint.

Let’s take a look at some office-greening opportunities.

1. Heating and Cooling

  • If you have access to your office thermostat, heat your office to a maximum temp of 21°C when occupied; when you are not around turn it down to 16°C. Use automatic setback thermostats to adjust the temperature for weekends and evenings.
  • Use weather stripping and caulking to minimize heat loss from possible cracks near windows or doors.
  • Consider solar shading to reduce the amount of heat from the sun that penetrates your office building
  • Try to remember to keep the blinds closed to conserve heat in winter and keep it out during summer.
  • Think about outside air economizers that use outside air to cool down buildings when the air outside is cooler than the air inside.

2. Go Green with Your Printer

  • Try to buy and use recycled paper.
  • Use eco-mode on your printer if it has one.
  • Save paper by printing on both sides whenever possible.
  • Recycle your used ink and toner cartridges.
  • When buying a printer, choose one that is Energy Star compliant.
  • Do not set your printer to come on when you turn your computer on. Only turn it on when necessary.
  • Check out Soy-Based Ink. Not only is soybean ink better for the environment but it has many other benefits. Soy Ink’s prices are comparable to petroleum-based ink, but less soy ink is needed. It produces brighter, sharper colors because of the innate clearness of the soybean oil. And, it emits less harmful toxins.

3. Lighting

  • Turn off the lights in the room when not in use.
  • Do not leave your office lights on overnight.
  • Use light wall colors. The lighter your paint colors the more daylight they will reflect meaning you will need less overhead lighting.
  • Replace standard incandescent bulbs with compact fluorescent lamps wherever you can. They use 75 percent less energy while producing the same light output.

4. Office Supplies

  • Recycle used office supplies whenever possible
  • Purchase products that are made from post-consumer content such as paper and plastic products.
  • Eliminate your use of products that there are no green alternatives for, such as rubber bands.
  • Turn of machines when you leave for the night and activate sleep modes for printers, copiers and fax machines.
  • Consider consolidating these machines by purchasing a machine that performs multiple functions in one product.

5. General Ideas for a Greener-Office Space

  • Place recycling boxes or centers in a prominent location so that you and employees remember to recycle.
  • Encourage re-usable mugs, glasses and dishes rather than disposables.
  • Have at least one large plant in your office. They not only are great for decoration but they recycle the air.
  • E-mail instead of Faxing whenever possible
  • Use organic products for cleaning of washrooms and offices.
  • Get and use a battery charger. Re-usable batteries will save time and money and reduce the amount of toxic materials sent to landfills.

All of these ideas are simple and inexpensive ways of making your office space more environmentally friendly. Going green is something that can save you money and you can feel good about.

Our Contribution:

Some of the things we have been doing at Elite Business Centres to reduce our environmental impact:

  • We recycle paper, glass, plastic and are working toward a paperless office.
  • All money collected from bottles and recyclable containers is donated to a different charity at the end of each year.
  • Recently, we added sensors so that if an office has not been occupied for 40 minutes, the lights automatically go off.
  • We are participating in a “turn your monitor off” campaign to encourage everyone to turn off their monitors at the end of the day, rather than rely on energy-consuming screen savers.