2013 Didn’t Bring An NBA Team to Seattle, But It Did Bring…

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What does Seattle have?  A thriving start-up community and established technology hub, world renowned coffee, an infamous independent music scene, a top ranked NFL team, the lush green of the Pacific NorthWest and so much more.

Sadly, 2013 did not bring back an NBA team, but there is a game changer in town. OfficeSpace.com’s long awaited new platform is about to change the way players in the commercial real estate arena engage with clients.

In fact, businesses and commercial real estate pros now have a new online stadium with OfficeSpace.com’s improved site and service for the Seattle market.

Since launching its new service 18 months ago, OfficeSpace.com has served thousands of tenants looking to lease office, retail and industrial spaces.  OfficeSpace.com allows tenants unrestricted searches of its comprehensive database with over 27,000 properties, at no charge, something typically not done in the traditional commercial real estate world.

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Today, we are proud to launch our free service in our home market of Seattle.  “We felt this was a great time to launch as the business community is thriving and there are a lot of eyes on Seattle right now.” says Susie Algard, CEO. 

Businesses can now search from over 7,000 available listings in the Greater Seattle area. We expect the number of tenants coming to access these listings will grow quickly, as we are the city’s only commercial real estate site offering this type of platform.

The new site has a clean design aesthetic with an intuitive, user-friendly map based search, photo rich listings, and advanced search filters, all of which were created to make the tenant search experience much more engaging and efficient.

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“With today’s launch, we are excited to be bringing more qualified tenants to the broker community.” says Algard. OfficeSpace.com’s new site was designed with these relationships in mind. The commercial real estate audience can benefit from several complimentary marketing tools, including nationwide tenant rosters, a no-software flyer creator, comprehensive market surveys, and upgraded property listings.

So, while the city sits waiting patiently for another opportunity to bring back the NBA, we’ll continue to up our game to better serve the Seattle market. We’re no substitute for a basketball team but we’re practicing our virtual jump shots none the less in hopes of a CRE MVP title.

OfficeSpace.com is now serving Seattle, Denver, Portland and San Diego with upcoming markets on the horizon.

Broker Banter – Questions & Answers (The Portland Chapter)

We’re the first to admit we don’t always have all the answers when it comes to the fine details of leasing and all the questions that come with it. That’s when we turn to our commercial comrades to aid with the broadening of our knowledge base.  This week we’ve gone straight to the source to speak with Portland, OR broker Kristi Ricker.

We connected with Kristi to talk shop, and in fact, where to set up shop.

OfficeSpace: What do you think is the most important question a tenant should be asking, that they never seem to ask when looking for space?

Kristi: Zoning, tenants need to learn more out about zoning. There are so many issues in this area and if you’re not aware of this in the beginning it could hurt your chances of securing your ideal space. It’s something you should ask your broker about as they’ll be able to determine how to move forward in narrowing down your search. It’s just not something that’s on the top of your mind when you’re looking for a space and it definitely should be.

OfficeSpace: What is the best tip in negotiating a lease you think all tenants should consider? 

Kristi: The longer the lease, the better you’re going to be able to negotiate, especially if you are going to need anything done to your space. People are nervous with the idea of securing a 5 year lease, they think “What if something happens?” – but they can always put a clause in allowing them to sublease (A lease of a property by a tenant to a subtenant.).

OfficeSpace: What do tenants focus on, that perhaps they shouldn’t when searching for space?

Kristi: Recently, I’ve had clients who have looked at a space and were concerned the buildings around it were being worked on or unfinished. Unfortunately, this doesn’t always paint a pretty picture of the neighborhood, especially when it’s an up and coming urban area. I recommend looking at the bigger finished picture and inquiring about what’s being developed in the area.

OfficeSpace: What area of town would you recommend to a Start-Up in Portland?

Kristi: The inner Southeast, Northeast and North Portland are very hot right now. They were predominantly industrial areas and now they’ve turned into these very creative pockets with great opportunities for startups, restaurants, retail and more.

OfficeSpace: What are you starting to see more of in Portland?

Kristi: Tons of startups, restaurants, breweries, delis – there’s a great food scene here.

OfficeSpace: And lastly, what makes Portland great?

Kristi: Portland‘s so diverse, we have a little bit of everything for everyone. Everything goes here – that’s what I love about it. I see all these new ideas here and they seem to work. If you have a crazy, fun new idea, there’s a great support network for that here. It just seems out of the ordinary things work here more than other places. Nothing is guaranteed but your chances of making it a go seems to have better odds in Portland.

Kristi has over 15 years of real estate experience in the greater Portland area and has recently started her own company.

Need Office, Retail or Industrial Space in Portland? Visit us here – OfficeSpace.com/Portland

“Good Fortune Comes to San Diego Commercial Real Estate Community…”


San Diego, CA Friday November 9, 2012 – Commercial Real Estate’s latest game changer, OfficeSpace.com, is now officially available in the San Diego market targeting both brokers and tenants.

The company’s unique position to be the next generation, all access platform for office space aims to streamline the commercial real estate process.


Having already garnered attention for their creative introductions in each market,  San Diego is no different with over 600 custom gourmet fortune cookies sent to the majority of brokerages through out the community with varying personalized fortunes.

OfficeSpace.com offers a multitude of services targeted to assisting brokers; landlords and property managers connect to tenants. The broker-and-landlord-to-tenant service is completely free for brokers and landlords to list. It also includes an extensive suite of free, timesaving tools created specifically for today’s market with options to design flyers, create surverys and communicate with tenants. Tenants are offered full complimentary access right at their fingertips with user specific designated search options, map functionality, social media sharing tools while also providing helpful tips on the confusing aspects of leasing.

“We are excited about providing service in San Diego. Tenants now have access to the
information they need to make better decisions about their businesses. We also provide a
robust tool set for brokers in order to compliment their marketing efforts and connect them
to tenants.” – Susie Algard – CEO, OfficeSpace.com
About OfficeSpace.com

OfficeSpace.com’s innovative service will help add great value to the San Diego Commercial Real Estate Market. Other markets include Denver, CO and Portland, OR. To add a listing, find an office or find out more visit OfficeSpace.com

History OfficeSpace.com

Experienced internet entrepreneurs Susie and Alex Algard purchased OfficeSpace.com in late 2010. Frustrated by some of the trial and tribulations of their own experiences trying to find office space for companies they were involved in, they decided it was time to make a change in the commercial real estate space. Susie, CEO of OfficeSpace.com, was previously a senior executive and founding member at WhitePages.com, a top 30 internet property.
OfficeSpace.com also operates one of the leading commercial real estate marketing and analytics services in Seattle, Portland, Denver, Minneapolis, Cincinnati & Columbus.

Movin On Up (Part 2)

Chalkboards and Chairs and Chartreuse Oh My!

Last Thursday was the big reveal for our new space! This was it, a sneak peek at our new digs. (Side bar – the biggest concern when setting up a new office always seems to be the floor plan aka “who am I sitting beside?”. It may be engrained in us from high school but that’s okay because we’re all about embracing our youth here at OfficeSpace.com.)

Potential Floorplan (open concept) w/ Chalk “Brainstorming” Wall.

Amongst the concerns we laid out in last week’s blog “Movin On Up Part 1” were – what to do with our office furniture and whether or not we should design the space ourselves. Well, it turns out the best laid plans are ones that involve doing a bit of both.

1. For our furniture/supplies dilemma, we referenced Pinterest obsessively and tried to incorporate our own furniture with a few creative ideas from Pinterest ie. Our Chalkboard Wall.

2. We also figured out the most efficient way to get rid of the furniture we couldn’t re-use was to sell it to our neighbors in the same loft space. We already share the same esthetic and neither party had to travel far for deliveries and pick ups.

3. Despite our own in-house decorating efforts we still needed a bit of assistance so we hired a local designer to help walk us through a few things. Keep in mind small budget doesn’t equal 100% DIY. We were still able to bring on a professional who could help tie everything together and offer some affordable solutions.

4. In keeping with our brand identity we’ve decided to add accents like throw pillows and desk supplies in our team colors while keeping everything else “Ikea” white. This keeps costs down, is easy to refresh and won’t look dated in a few years.

Next Friday is the actual move and we’re sourcing things like gently used boxes for packing (more enviro-friendly/economical) and looking at how to introduce ourselves into our new subleased space which happens to be shared by a large Seattle web based business who has been kind enough to offer us our new home.

Stay tuned for the finished product and a new look at Chez OfficeSpace.com

Movin On Up! (Part 1)

Big News! We’re moving offices!

Our Current Space (the team hard at work!)

Yay! Streamers, confetti, balloons!

Excitement, pride, growth – all good!

Suddenly, those feelings were followed up by the pending loom of “ah nuts, moving means packing means boxes means design choices and so on and so on”… Just when we got comfortable and everything had a place. We needed to retreat to the “Living Room”..

The “Living Room”

Yes, there are many questions we here at OfficeSpace.com have now been faced with regarding our upcoming move. So we thought who better to share them with then you.

  • First we thought, what do we do with everything?
  • Do we bring our old furniture to the new location? Recycle it? Repurpose it? Resell it?
  • Start from scratch?
  • Hire a designer vs do it ourselves?
  • We’re a small team with a budget to match so how do we maintain our hip, cool, start up, tech office vibe we pin daily on our Pinterest board?

You might be asking, aren’t these some of the many things you deal with when tenants contact you about moving and finding office space through OfficeSpace.com? You’re absolutely right, but there’s something to the saying “walking a mile in someone else’s shoes”. So, as we continue our adventure over the next few weeks we’ll be sharing what we’ve learned and our progress as we approach moving day (October 5th!)

Do you have any office moving horror stories or perhaps any great recommendations or tips? If so, please feel free to send them our way.

P.S. We’ll be keeping this…

Obligatory “Office Space” poster

The Simple Math on Why Brokers Aren’t Returning Your Calls

If you’ve ever wondered why brokers aren’t calling you back when you’re looking for small spaces, let me break it down for you with simple math.

First, here’s some background on how brokers get paid:  brokers usually get paid a percentage of your total lease value.  What that percentage is varies from region to region but it’s typically between 3 to 5%.  However, brokers typically have to share a percentage of their commission with their brokerage companies.  This percentage can also vary but I’m going to use a 60/40-commission split for our purposes with 60% going to the individual broker.

To get to a signed lease, there is typically a lot of work.  There are calls or in-person meetings, searching for available spaces that meet your requirements, calls to set up property tours, the actual property tours and lease negotiations. All of the steps I mention above are the same for a company looking for 10,000 square feet of space as 500 square feet of space.  In addition, most companies looking for smaller spaces are unsure of what their space needs will be in the next year or two so they are only looking for shorter term deals whereas companies needing larger spaces tend to look for longer lease terms.  So, here’s what the math looks like in both scenarios:


500 square foot space x $30/square foot per year = $15,000 in annual rent

Lease term is 1 year:  1 year lease value $15,000 total rent (for ease of calculations, I’m assuming no rent escalation)

Brokerage company’s commission 5% = $750

Broker’s commission 60% of brokerage company’s commission = 60% x $750 = $450


10,000 square foot space x $30/square foot per year = $300,000 in annual rent

Lease term is 3 years:  3 x $300,000 = $900,000 in total rent

Brokerage company’s commission 5% = $45,000

Broker’s commission 60% of brokerage company’s commission = 60% x $45,000 = $27,000

This is a very simple way to look at the two deals. Every deal is unique but you can see that the numbers just don’t make sense for brokers with smaller spaces.  This doesn’t even take into account the number of times brokers work on a deal where they’ve put in their time and the deal goes dead for reasons outside of their control.   If you could spend the same amount of time for $27,000 versus $450, what would you do with your time?  Even if you tried to make a volume play, you would have to close 60 smaller deals to earn the same revenue that you would with one larger deal.

This is one of the reasons that we’ve built a site designed to allow tenants to self -serve.  By providing all of the relevant information about a space on our site, we are hoping that we can really cut down on the time investment needed for research and tours by brokers.  If you represent a small space that you need to get leased without losing money to get it leased, upload it to our site and ensure that you have lots of photos and that the information is complete.  We’ll be sending you qualified leads in no time.