A Guide to Help You Choose How Much Office Space Is Needed

When you’re on the hunt for office real estate, it will help you and the realtor you work with if you have a rough idea of how much space you need. Everything you use to run your office requires space, so when estimating how much space you need, you have a lot to account for, including equipment and employees.

Office space requirements will vary by industry and company. You’ll also need to determine what style of office you desire. Do you want individual offices within the office space? Or, are you considering using cubicles to divide up space? Some offices don’t divide the space at all, but instead have an open space plan with no options for privacy.

Will your office need a kitchen or conference room? Do you go through a lot of supplies in which you’ll need a supply closet? Knowing all of these minute details is important to calculating how much office real estate you need to effectively operate your office.

While there is no hard and fast rule for how much space each piece of equipment will require, or how much space each worker should be provided, there are some averages you can use to help you make an educated calculation. With the averages, if you decide to tighten the space up, you can do that; or, you can even make it more spacious.

The more important the position, generally, the more space the person is provided. For the president of the company or department, 400 square feet is about average. Next down is the vice president, who averages about 200 square feet. Each manager needs about 150 square feet of space.

Employee space depends on position. Engineers and accountants generally need more space to work with. Anywhere from 150 to 175 square feet should suffice. Someone who is simply at a computer all day only needs about 125 square feet. This would include data entry clerks, programmers, and customer service representatives.

Other rooms you’ll want to consider are storage and file rooms. A comfortable size would be 200 square feet. A conference room should be calculated at 25 square feet per person seated.

The cost of the office real estate will be largely contingent upon city and state, and then the areas within the city and state. In larger cities, downtown spaces can be costlier due to their proximity to important locations. Before signing a lease, be sure it’s a price you’re sure you can afford for the next two years or more.

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