Sublet office space NYC may be a great financial deal for your law firm. Be aware that you must balance the equities between that great deal and the possible restrictive covenants that the space contains.
Subletting an empty office in someone else’s leased office space (typically that of another law firm) is traditionally the most common office solution for self-employed, small firm lawyers.
It is impractical for the typical small firm attorney to incur all the expenses associated with leasing an office space directly from a landlord. A large up-front investment is required to build out and equip a space, the monthly carrying costs are expensive and landlords frequently require long-term commitments of five years or more, which can be impractical for a small law practice.
By subletting an empty office from another law firm, a small firm attorney can leverage someone else’s long term financial risk and up-front investment by paying a small premium in rent.
Be careful when you choose sublet office space NYC. The seemingly cheap rent may come with a few catches.
Sublet office space NYC landlords may have crazy rules about their space.
One of the nice things about renting your own office directly from a commercial landlord is that you get to make up your own rules. Even if you rent an office from an executive office center, operators set common-sense rules based on industry best practices that are reasonably consistent from center to center. These rules help to keep the center a civilized place to work.
Law firms who sublet space are not in the business of renting office space. It’s not uncommon to have to deal with quirky rules set by the sublet landlord. Things we’ve seen, for example:
You must have cherry wood furnishings purchased from Room and Board.
The cost of paper is split between all lawyers whether you use the copy machine or not.
You can use the conference room any time you want, unless your landlord’s firm needs it; then you’re on your own.
Even worse than quirky rules, some sublet spaces have no rules at all. In this case, you may have a smorgasbord of annoying and disruptive behavior from your suitemates.