The Commercial Office Space Search Process

Every business is unique, with unique commercial office space needs.  Likewise, every site selection proceeds according to the distinct characteristics of the business and market in question.  However, most successful site selections usually progress through 10 broad steps.  Below, I outline these steps and the time they should occur.

Please note that, for the purposes of this article, I assume a size requirement of approximately 10,000 square feet.  If the tenant is looking for fewer square feet, then less time is required for each step; if the tenant is looking for more commercial office space, then more time is required.  The time frames also assume that the properties already exist.  If a facility is to be newly constructed, please add 9 months to one year to the time range.

These time frames are ideal, but the process can be completed on a tighter schedule if necessary.  I have done so many times!

10-12 months before moving into commercial office space

Select a tenant representation commercial real estate broker who specializes in the local office market. Review your existing lease.  Read First Steps in an Office RelocationWhy Should I Retain a Broker to Negotiate My Office Rental.  commercial office

With your tenant representation broker, develop facility/site criteria.   Based on your criteria, develop a list of properties to tour.  Tour selected properties, taking detailed notes.  Develop a short list of 5 or so properties based on tour results, preliminary financial information provided by broker.  Read Office for Lease Search TipsTouring Office Space for Lease.  commercial office space.

8-10 months before moving into commercial office space

Using financial analysis, narrow alternatives to 2 or 3 options.  Read Perform a Financial Analysis Before You Rent Office Space.

6-8 months before moving into commercial office space

Submit a Request for Proposal (RFP) to final 2 or 3 alternatives, creating competitive bidding environment.  Submit RFP to current landlord if renewal is a possibility.    commercial office space.

4-6 months before moving into commercial office space

Receive and evaluate initial proposals from landlords.  Update financial analysis with new data.  Re-tour if necessary.  Reconsider priorities.  Empower your tenant representation broker to negotiate on your behalf and to create a competitive bidding environment.  Once both parties reach a general consensus on economic terms, sign a nonbinding Letter of Intent (LOI) to document the agreement.

Receive the lease and check it for accuracy.  Retain an attorney who specializes in commercial real estate to negotiate the contract.

Begin construction on space as soon as lease has been signed and final space plan approved.  Designate a moving coordinator for your office relocation.  commercial office space.

At Golden Group Real Estate, we specialize in tenant representation real estate services for office space users in the Chicago area, helping local business owners find office space and negotiate lease and purchase agreements. We never represent landlords, so we are prepared to negotiate aggressively on behalf of our tenant clients.

For more on Golden Group Real Estate, read about our real estate services.  Let us know if we can help you find office space for rent or buildings for sale.  Call us at (630) 805-2463, email us at, or enter your office space search criteria below.


June 19, 2019

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To schedule a free consultation at our offices in Lombard call us at (630) 805-2463 or email us at to schedule a time to to talk about your real estate needs.

Our tenant and buyer representation real estate services are 100% free to our clients.  We are active commercial real estate brokers and work with all Oak Brook, Naperville, Downers Grove, Lisle, and Dupage County office buildings.  Golden Group Real Estate will show you both listed and unlisted investment properties.

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