While many people struggle under the strain of the current economic climate, others will still be flourishing. Many businesses have been lucky enough to be successful, even in difficult times, and expansion may be on the horizon.
If you have a business and you’re thinking of expanding, there are plenty of things that you need to consider before you take the plunge. As with many business decisions, expansion certainly has its risks and you need to ensure that you minimise these, while also having some backup plans in place should things go awry.
Self-employment can be an incredible benefit to many people – in fact, the Office for National Statistics has shown that the number of people who are self-employed has reached a 20 year high. While many self-employed individuals will be content with the set-up that they have (perhaps working from home or from a retail premises), for others, the prospect of an office may be more than just a little appealing.
Expanding to an office will inevitably bring with it more responsibilities and a larger drain on your cashflow. You have to make sure that the move will be affordable, without making too big a dent in your profits. Here are a few essentials that you need to consider before the move.
- The Rental of the Premises will be a new expense that you will have to worry about. Working from a home office has its advantages in this way and as soon as you consider a move to an office, no matter how big or small, you have to bear in mind the cost of its upkeep and the monthly rent that you will be expected to pay.
- The Price of Utilities will have to be considered. These are essential for the day-to-day running of office space, providing gas, electricity and water so that your working environment can be warm, well-lit and comfortable. Bear these in mind when considering the expansion and, if you do decide to expand, make sure that you’re not contracted to estimated billing and provide regular meter readings so that you don’t spend over the odds.
- Technology that you will need will require investment for the initial start-up costs. Computers, phones, printers etc. will all need to be provided. You will also have to look into business Internet, phone packages and security software to ensure your bases are covered.
- Employees are a common addition when you expand and, if they are going to be working from the same office, you will need to consider their needs too. You will also have to calculate whether you will be able to afford their salaries.
- If you’re moving to an office but are still working for yourself without any help, consider sharing the office space with somebody else in a similar position – you will be able to share the costs incurred with the premises, including the utilities and tax associated.
This article was written on behalf of British Gas. Take a look at the commercial electricity and business gas prices from British Gas and see whether your business would benefit from a switch. Compare gas prices online, today.