Where Do I Work From?

By Fola Daniel Adelesi

As an entrepreneur, the decision to work from home or rent an office space is dicey. A recent online research reveals that some office spaces in Lagos, Nigeria are more expensive than equivalent spaces in New York City. While the cost of a good office space in a decent location is relative, entrepreneurs need to focus on the relevance of the office space to their businesses. This is not to say that startups should not rent office spaces. The bigger issue is the capacity for small businesses to meet up with rent and increasing overhead expenses.

According to meqasa.com a real-estate marketplace,  rental costs ranges from $500 dollars a month in East Legon, Greater Accra to approximately $3,000 dollars in other areas. Before taking the decision to get an office space, consider the rental costs in comparison to the value of the business and cash flow potential. The business must be able to sustain operations for at least 18 months to recover the cost of the office space. Another important factor to consider is how relevant an office space will be to your business operations. If the business can operate efficiently without securing a location, working from home may not be such a bad idea to avoid unnecessary financial burden. Alternatively, you can consider these low-cost office ideas:

Virtual Offices – With today’s digital revolution, virtual offices are fast becoming a trend. Virtual offices help small businesses save time, reduce overhead costs, provide flexibility for teams to work remotely and even increase productivity. Companies like IBM and Amazon have embraced virtual offices for members of their teams to work remotely.

Office Sublets – Businesses with large office space can consider subletting unused office space to other companies. By subletting you can reduce your operating expense (or earn extra cash) while putting the space into good use.

Business Hubs – The use business hubs or co-working is another growing trend that small businesses can implement rather than renting. With this option, entrepreneurs can share an open workspace with a diverse group, secure a prime location at a cheaper rate, while enjoying the facilities of a traditional office space.

Early-stage businesses can save a substantial amount on operating expense by implementing one of the mentioned low-cost office ideas. As an entrepreneur, the decision to secure an office must be justified and not based on the reputation that comes with owning an office.