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Non, Semi and Serviced Offices: What's the Difference?

19 December 2017

There may come a time in the life of your small business when commercial office space is required. If you find yourself in this position, it likely means you have outgrown your home office or co-working space. This is great news because, evidently, your startup or small business is growing!

The tricky part, however, is deciding which type of office space is best for you. The three main types of commercial offices for rent are as follows:

  • Non-serviced office
  • Serviced office
  • Semi-serviced office

We understand that these terms are quite ambiguous and can cause a great deal of confusion. To clarify and help you make the right decision, here is a brief overview of each type of commercial office space available for your SME or limited company.

What is a Non-Serviced Office?

A non-serviced office is generally referred to as a ‘leased office’. This is the traditional type of office that most people are familiar with. It involves renting business premises from a commercial landlord on a long-term lease agreement.

The tenant has full control of the rented space and is responsible for decor and upkeep, repairs and maintenance, purchasing furniture, installing phone and internet lines, arranging utilities, and paying business and water rates, etc.

With a non-serviced office, you have more control over layout and design, but you are also responsible for maintenance and furnishing

A non-serviced/leased commercial property is a huge undertaking and can be costly, so it is usually not the most suitable choice for startups and very small businesses. It is, however, the preferred choice for large or established businesses or those who require full control of their business premises.

What is a Serviced Office?

Serviced offices, which are also called ‘managed offices’ or ‘business centres’, differ from conventional leased office spaces and offer greater flexibility to business owners. They are fully equipped and fully furnished, they have phone and internet already installed, and they include reception and support staff. This means you can move in and get down to business immediately.

Serviced offices are provided and managed by other companies like property management firms, virtual office providers, and company formation agents on a flexible, month-by-month basis. There’s no need to commit to an expensive long-term lease, nor is there any large financial outlay in the way of deposits and quarterly rent up front.

With a serviced office, you can get down to business right away!

With serviced offices, your utilities, rates, cleaning, maintenance, repairs, security, reception, and IT services are usually included in the monthly rental charge, and you will have the added advantage of shared meeting and conference rooms, kitchen and restroom facilities, and other essential business equipment and services at your disposal.

All of the benefits of a high-quality, fully-equipped commercial office space at a fraction of the cost of a traditional leased office. Tailored to suit the individual needs of each business, a serviced office is perfect for many startups, SMEs, limited companies, and partnerships.

What is a Semi-Serviced Office?

Semi-serviced offices sit somewhere in between non-serviced/managed offices and serviced offices. They are high-quality commercial spaces that provide business owners with even greater flexibility to use and pay for only the services, facilities, and accommodation options they require.

Heating and lighting is included as standard. Office spaces may be fully equipped and fully-furnished at your discretion, or you may wish take care of these things yourself. Likewise with phone and broadband - these can be provided or you can install your own services if preferred.

Semi-serviced offices provide business owners with a high levels of flexibility

Semi-serviced offices do not include reception, telephone answering services, cleaning, or security as standard, but you can choose to include these additional services at any time - at short notice, and on a flexible basis.

Every business has completely unique needs and varying budgets, especially in the early days when just starting out. Semi-serviced offices are therefore an ideal and incredibly affordable solution for many entrepreneurs and startups, freelancers, sole traders, and very small companies and partnerships who need to keep costs to a minimum whilst creating a professional, credible image to clients, investors, and lenders.

Commercial Property to Let in Glasgow

At Stelmain, we are committed to helping you find the perfect space to grow your business. We offer a variety of quality commercial properties for rent in Glasgow, including traditional leased premises, fully serviced offices, and semi-serviced office spaces.

Take a look at our extensive commercial property portfolio to find the ideal office or retail space for your new or existing business, or contact us for more information.

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