pretoria offices

Businesses that require industrial space are usually in it for the long term, so the decision for the location for your industrial operations shouldn’t be made in haste. There are a number of factors to keep in mind when buying or renting industrial space. Consider the following:

Location

The ideal location for industrial property is determined by different factors to that of commercial property or office space. Industrial property needs to be located near to various accessible modes of transport such as road, rail, ports, and airports; most of which are on the fringes of major cities and towns. However, as a business owner, you’d also want to pick a location that is easy to reach for your employees, as well as easily seen by your potential customers – property exposure and visible brand frontage is also important. It will be difficult to attract clients if your premises are too far away.

Economics

Whether buying or renting industrial property, the amount of money you need to spend on it will be directly influenced by the location. Factories and warehouses that are further away from the city centre will be cheaper to rent or buy; while industrial space closer to attractive major routes and a denser population will be more expensive to occupy. What you spend on square metres, however, you’ll save in transport and advertising costs. If your industrial building is situated next to a highway, you’ll get more branding bang for your buck because your brand will be seen daily by thousands of commuters. Don’t just accept this as a given, though; do your research and determine the average rental and purchase costs of similar industrial space in the neighbourhood to conclude that you’re getting a good price.

Modern amenities

Being in the throes of the green revolution, the age of the industrial building you want to occupy should also influence your decision to buy or rent there. Older buildings, though more economical, will tend to be less energy efficient and may cost a lot of money to “green” or retrofit. Newer buildings will be required to adhere to environmentally friendly standards and will be developed accordingly.

Security

Business insurance will only go so far – it’s important to ensure that your industrial property has adequate security. Access control via booms, security personnel, check-in procedures and/or key-card access has become the standard for most businesses. Property fencing needs to be adequate and properly maintained, and it’s not too drastic to also sign on to armed response services in case of emergency.

Globalisation, international trade relations, and the power of the Internet mean that no business operates in isolation. If one economy trips, others will stumble; if one major corporation hits an obstacle, the smaller businesses that operate in its wake will also be affected by it. So when the 2008 recession arrived on the economic scene, it had a global impact and even badly affected the fairly independent South African economy. With less investment capital to go around, commercial trade slowed and the commercial property sector saw the end of the incredible boom period of 2001 to 2007.

During the boom, the commercial property sector recorded sky-rocketing prices, low vacancies, and massive investment influx, with investors local and abroad looking to capitalise off such a healthy market. When the 2008 recession cast a dark cloud over the international market, the South African market also suffered a major slump, with financial power receding away from the excesses of the past.

The good news for the current market is that the effects of that recession are rescinding and the market has slowly but steadily gained new ground, and a new boom period is expected in the next four to five years. The property market generally experiences a significant boom every 10 years, roughly synchronised with the 20-year boom cycles of the construction sector. With the downturn of construction operations also due to the recession, the rising activity in the commercial property sector will ensure that past recession vacancies will soon be filled; while the demand for new commercial space increases and investment can be aimed at the construction industry once again.

With that said, there is still gradual ongoing activity in construction – with new commercial developments consistently changing the landscape of the CBD’s as well as decentralised nodes in which they occur. The Cape Town CBD, Johannesburg nodes of Sandton, Rosebank, Bryanston and Midrand, as well as Durban hotspot, Umhlanga, may not be experiencing development in hyper-drive, but it is persistent, albeit a slowed-down version of the development that took place in the early part of the 21st century.

A consistent interest rate and (hopefully) sustained economic growth could mean the realisation of the anticipated commercial property sector recovery. And if history repeats itself, there will be cause for celebration as the commercial property sector reaches new highs in the mid-term – commercial players need to weather the storm and their perseverance will be rewarded.

Submitted by Jade Paviour

Office desk and chair facing wall

Most people spend most of their day in an office, so it helps to not sit in a warehouse-like setup with the cold glare of buzzing fluorescents backlighting their computer screens for eight painful hours a day. Whether your office is in a Jacaranda-lined suburb in Pretoria or on a spacious Welgemoed property, your employees deserve to have their work space jazzed up so that they feel more inspired and happy while they work.

Here are some easy ways to liven up an everyday office:

1. Paint in colour!
Painting the walls of an office can completely change the vibe. Even if you don’t want to be too extreme, simply painting one wall can bring the office to life. Employees may even change their cubicle décor to suit the new office colour.

2. Install a suggestion-whiteboard
The beauty of a whiteboard is that it can be used, changed, and used again. Allow employees to make lists, take meeting notes, or simply write inspirational quotes on the whiteboard. Make it their creative space – this will get everyone contributing to the ideas board, which may even inspire the boss!

3. Get a coffee maker
If you’re the boss that everyone loves to hate, turn that all around with a coffee maker. Employees will forget that you made them work late or that performance reviews feel like purgatory – as long as they have the bitter injection of a regular latte, they’ll forgive you. Include a vending machine and you’ll almost certainly be given a “BEST BOSS EVER” mug as a joint gift from all of them.

4. Put up personal artwork
This is a great idea if you work in a creative environment. Very often, employees’ personal creativity gets side-lined in favour of clients’ creative briefs. Suggest that each office creative bring a personal artwork to the office to hang on the walls. Not only will this change the dynamic of the office, but the personalisation will make employees feel like their creativity matters.

How have you livened up your office space? Comment below and give other employers some great ideas!

Image courtesy of: pinterest.com

It was reported recently that the Fountainhead Property Trust negotiations on the unsolicited offer from Redefine Properties to acquire all its property assets was complete “in all material respects”, but it had extended the deadline until February 22 2013.

At the same time of this offer, Growthpoint Properties also lodged an unsolicited bid. It was decided however, by the Fountainhead’s independent committee, not to engage with Growthpoint, but deal exclusively with Redefine. This exclusivity was scheduled to expire on the 31st January 2013 if a written sale agreement had not been concluded, but this was extended to the 22nd February 2013.

Foutainhead Property Trust said the exclusivity had been extended to verify the proposed execution of sale by its’ newly appointed trustee, and that it complied with the Collective Investment Schemes Control Act and its trust deed. Fountainhead units lost 0.82% at the end of January 2013.