- November 16, 2017
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With the current growth of urgent care centers and the growing trend of medical practices opening within traditional retail and office spaces, finding the right medical office space for your practice has become a much different search than it used to be. Leasing a medical office space is likely a long-term commitment on your part, so making sure that you take careful consideration when choosing your property is imperative. We have identified some of the most important factors you will need to pay attention to.
While cost is a factor in any type of real estate transaction, it is even more so when you are searching for medical office space. With so many patient safety and regulatory requirements to be met, there is a good chance that you will incur additional costs to convert the space into something that suits your practices needs, particularly if you are moving into more mainstream office (as opposed to pre-existing medical office space). Get very clear on what sort of medical equipment you will need to install and what, if any, financial obligation you may be looking at to modify the space to properly support that equipment. If you will have x-ray machines, what changes will you need to make to ensure that patients and staff are safe? Converting a space can be extremely costly, so it is important to determine this number well before you sign a lease.
Get Familiar with the Layout
When searching for medical office space, the floorplan and building exterior can be key components affecting success. Is the building accessible for after-hour patients (if this is something your practice offers)? Is there an area designated for emergency vehicles? Is there ample parking to accommodate your patients? You will also want to note how many individual patient rooms will be available and the size of the waiting area. Pay attention to the maximum occupancy of the space as well and make sure that it will meet the needs of your practice.
Length of Lease
As previously noted, leasing medical office space is typically a long-term investment. With the installation of costly medical equipment and the establishment of a repeat patient base, it wouldn’t make much sense to jump from location to location. For this reason you will want to make sure that you are able to sign a longer lease. However, protect yourself by ensuring that there is a clause within the lease that puts a cap on yearly rent increases. It is important, as well, to remember that life doesn’t always go as planned, and therefore, you should have a cancellation or sale of practice clause in place to protect your investment should things change down the line (often in case of death or disability). This type of clause will protect you from costs associated with breaking the lease should something unforeseen happen.
Make Sure Your Property Meets Requirements
The standards on medical office space are a bit different from traditional office space. You will need to make sure that you obtain any required certificates or approvals for medical equipment, as well as ensure that you are meeting the standards put in place by the ADA (Americans with Disabilities Act). This act requires facilities to be able to accommodate disabled patrons through a series of strictly adhered to rules and regulations. Getting clear on what these are will help you to avoid potentially costly changes after you have signed the lease.
Ensure Your Patient’s Privacy
With a typical lease, the landlord has the right to enter the property at any time to ensure that all of the terms agreed upon are being complied with. However, with medical office space this cannot be the case. Due to patient privacy, there must be a clause included in the lease outlining that the landlord will need to be accompanied by medical personnel any time they wish to enter the property. Due to the nature of the business, it should also be agreed upon that the landlord will request entrance well in advance to set a time that will help to avoid patient interaction.
Looking for Medical Office Space in the Baton Rouge Area?
With medical office space, more than any other, it is so important to work with a qualified broker who has proven experience successfully negotiating lease terms for a medical practice. Don’t just work with anybody, work with the best. At SVN | Graham, Langlois & Legendre, LLC, our team of dedicated Advisors specializes in commercial real estate sales and leasing and has a proven track record of success. We are one hundred percent committed to you and with you every step of the way to ensure that the leasing process goes smoothly from start to finish. Take a look at our properties today and contact us to get the search started.