3 easy tips to leverage a Grand Central virtual office to make your home-based law practice more professional.
A virtual office rental arrangement is a financial arrangement where solo and small firm attorneys pay a low monthly fee (typically starting at $149.00 month) to rent the use of a premium commercial address in an executive office suite and the non-exclusive use of office space and amenities, such as conference room facilities, a staffed reception area and access to law firm grade telecommunications and office equipment.
How do home-based attorneys benefit from a New York City virtual office?
You may choose to work from a home office simply because you can, or for other valid lifestyle reasons. After all, it is one of the perks of being your own boss.
However, as a home-based lawyer, you will encounter clients, colleagues or adversaries who assume that you are less professional (or less successful) because you work from a home office. This may result in greater difficulty negotiating deals with adversaries, prospective clients not hiring you, or demanding that you lower your rate since it’s not going to the overhead of an office.
3 Ways To Make Your Home-Based Practice Appear More Professional with a Grand Central Virtual Office:
1. Do the work from home, but use a permanent commercial address for your practice.
First, use a permanent commercial business address A commercial address is important because it gives the impression as being more professional and more permanent.
Consider sharing a commercial office address with a friend, or you can rent one through a virtual office New York provider such as Law Firm Suites. By renting virtual office space, you give the appearance that you operate from a commercial office building, while avoiding the financial overhead associated with a traditional office rental.
In addition to the commercial mailing address, attorneys have access to reception serves, conference room usage on a per diem basis to meet clients and dedicated mail services.
A good office suite operator will never let on to your guests that you are anything other than a full time office renter.
P.S. If you are an urban apartment dweller, changing your home address from “Apartment 17B” to “Suite 17B” fools no one.
2. Have a permanent business phone number.
Keep a separate landline for your practice, and never use your home phone for business calls.
Clients and adversaries often redial from caller ID.
If you have an office line and call from your home phone, you risk a business call coming through to your home and your grade school aged child picking it up, or clients calling you at odd hours of the day thinking that they will just get voicemail.
This can ruin the professional image you have worked hard to create for your home-based law firm.
Professionalism matters most when it comes to meeting clients face-to-face. This is one of the most important parts of practicing law, and how you build a connection with clients. Do not let your clients come to your home to meet you! EVER!
You must meet the clients in a professional space. You dining room should never be your conference room.
You can rent a conference room or an office from a Grand Central virtual office provider each time you need to use it, or you can have an arrangement with an executive suite for law firms to include more conference room time. Pricing generally begins at $149.00 a month for these services in urban areas, such as New York City and Boston.
Just make sure that if you’re using a new space, you know how all the technology works in advance of your meeting, and where to find everything you’ll need before the client’s arrive. For all they know, this space is the office where you work from every day. Don’t blow the illusion by being incapable of dialing the phone.
Read more about how to utilize a Grand Central virtual office to forge a professional image for your home-based law practice in our eBook:
7 Steps to Running a Home-Based Law Practice