Quick guide to finding office space with Office Genie

  • What is Office Genie?

    Office Genie (formerly Desk Space Genie) is the only office search engine which allows you to search ALL the main types of office space for rent and then compare available space on a like-for-like "desk cost" basis. The office search is designed specifically for small businesses, startups and freelancers. You can search for spare office space in London, Birmingham, Manchester and throughout the UK.

    Which is actually the cheapest and best office rental space for your business? Traditional leased offices, serviced offices, shared offices or rent-a-desk schemes, or even sublet offices? Start by telling Office Genie where you're looking to rent, how big a radius you're willing to travel, and how many desks you need to fit into the office.

    When you've found something that looks good, get in touch direct with the advertiser to arrange viewings. Office Genie isn't a broker or an agent - just use us to completely free-of-charge search the office space rental market then take it from there.

    If you'd rather speak to someone and get personalised advice on how to rent office space then call our Office Search Helpline on 0203 053 3890.

  • What happened to Desk Space Genie?

    Don't worry, Desk Space Genie still exists! It's just expanded into Office Genie to allow small businesses to search office space for rent "by the desk" across a wider range of office space.

    Desk Space Genie was the UK's first online marketplace for spare desks and shared office space (launched March 2009). Companies can still list their spare desk and office space and then potential "deskers" (ahem, people looking for spare desks) can search all the listings by location (using the huge search box at the top of this page).

    Anyone can search Desk Space Genie free-of-charge. Furthermore, anyone can list their spare desks and office space free-of-charge.

  • What are shared offices and rent-a-desk schemes all about?

    Renting out spare desk space in offices is a growing phenomenon in the UK, powered by the broadband internet revolution and the massive growth in home and remote working, and now increasingly attractive to landlords and tenants as a way to monetise unused or wasted office space.

    Your typical "deskers" in a shared office are web designers, entrepreneurs, translators, journalists, coders, architects, and other professions where remote working is commonplace and there's no particular need to be anywhere other than near a fast broadband connection.

    Desk schemes in shared offices normally offer a hassle-free package where broadband, utilities and security are all included in a flat monthly fee, but there are also hot desk schemes which work on a pay-for-what-you-use basis.

    Shared offices have some real attractions: they're usually very cheap (because businesses are just looking for make a few extra quid from shared space), they come with short-term (usually rolling) contracts, they're immediate (e.g. move in tomorrow), and - like serviced office space - they mean you don't get all the hassle of managing an office. On top of all that, you get the buzz of a shared office.

  • What is serviced office space?

    Serviced office space is getting hugely popular as a flexible, affordable way of getting high-quality office rental space. Serviced office schemes are ready-made offices, often complete with office services such as receptionists, post, IT support, waste management, and so on. You simply agree a contract length and a flat monthly fee, and move in.

    Serviced offices have their advantages. First and foremost, you could move into one tomorrow and start working (and then move out next week if you just want an office for a few days - impossible with a traditional lease). Also there's a dramatic decrease in admin hassle - someone else does all the work and the costs are included in the monthly bill.

    Another attraction for some is that you get to share the building with other businesses - hence why serviced offices are often known as "business centres". Great for networking and shared services.

    The main perceived downsides are the monthly cost, which can often seem high (although remember it probably includes utilities and services) and the lack of control of the appearance and destiny of the building - if you want that, go for a leased option.

  • What is leased office space?

    Traditionally, most businesses have taken commercial office space by leasing from a landlord. This typically involves a medium to long term contract (say, from three years upwards) to rent office space where the tenant pays a fixed rent over a fixed period for the office work space.

    This can work well in many cases. As the tenant you normally get full control over the space - you can change carpets, build walls, bring your own furniture in - basically have the place as you want it for a secure term. You're also protected by a whole load of landlord and tenant legislation and case law. Rented office space can also work out very cheap when compared on a per desk space basis - just remember that there's other costs to be considered (legal fees, building management, etc.) which aren't an issue with serviced and shared offices.

    The downsides for many - particularly small businesses - are the office space rental liability over a fairly long-term, the legal costs, the running costs (energy, rates, insurance, etc.) the administrative hassle of running a commercial building, and having to pay to put the building right when you leave it.

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