We all know that physicians don’t have a lot of free time on their hands. So when you’re considering leasing a new medical office space, where do you begin?
There are many factors to consider when beginning the search for a new practice space, including:
- The changing dynamic of the area, positive or negative.
- The size and configuration of the space.
- The proximity to other medical services that complement your practice.
- Locations where you have existing physician relationships.
- Terms of the lease agreement.
- Other various rules and regulations.
In addition, leasing a previously non-medical office space comes with its own set of hurdles. Some of the biggest considerations include parking requirements (many states require about five parking spaces per every 1,000 square feet in the office), disability parking and access (are ramps and elevators available?), rules and regulations regarding medical waste disposal, and plumbing layout. Yes, plumbing is particularly important to consider when laying out a medical office. For example, do you prefer a centrally located sink for staff to clean up in, or do you want one in every examination room?
However, the biggest roadblock to successfully leasing these spaces is the landlord, as some offices may not want medical practices in the building. That said, it’s essential for your agent to be sensitive to the landlord’s preferences and concerns. Sometimes, unfortunately, the buck will stop there. But that doesn’t mean your search is over.
What a Commercial Real Estate Agent Can Do for You
Based on the information we discussed above, the enormity of searching for a medical office space can be daunting. Thankfully, experienced commercial real estate agents know the ins and outs of your region and can make recommendations based on their knowledge. They will be able to make suggestions based on the timing of the move, the area that you’re interested in and whether or not new schools, roads, or developments are being planned, as well as your priorities and requirements when it comes to the practice location and size of the space. Agents will also rely on market data, including demographic and traffic statistics, to steer you into the best direction.
Later, agents create a list of potential spaces to visit. Keeping in mind the time constraints that are typical with the physician lifestyle, agents will then schedule visits with the property representative of their favorite spaces. Once the top contender or contenders are chosen, agents will develop a proposal for their client with details on what the lease might be, what the office’s soonest availability is, what the requirement for a deposit is, etc. A good agent will have an intuitive understanding of your needs in order to ensure you are spending your time on what is most important–your patients.
Anne Arundel County’s medical universe revolves around two major hospital systems: Baltimore-Washington Medical Center in Glen Burnie and Anne Arundel Medical Center in Annapolis. As a result, physicians tend to practice in multiple locations nearby. Rules and regulations in these areas are very similar to nearby jurisdictions (as well as the state of Maryland as a whole). For example, parking requirements for a medical office space are approximately five spaces per every 1,000 square feet. However, if you are looking to rent a space for a new outpatient surgical center, keep in mind that Maryland requires you to earn a Certificate of Need first, a process that could last anywhere from a few months to over a year.
With over 15 years of experience assisting physicians and medical practices in the greater Baltimore-Washington region, Murphy Commercial Real Estate is ready to help you find your next medical office space. Like you put your trust in airplane pilots to get you safely to your destination, trust us to help you find your next medical office space.