You’ve likely heard the old adage that only three things matter in real estate: location, location, location.
Where you open your massage business has a significant impact on your future success. Therefore, when conducting site selection, you must approach the search seriously. Site selection is a monumental decision that can cost you a small fortune if you get it wrong.
Choose the Best Location for Your Massage Business
Your massage practice location needs to be a priority. In addition to physically viewing potential commercial properties, you must also do your homework so that you know you have chosen the best location possible. This advice applies to prospective, new and existing massage tenants; the latter group may be considering relocating prior to their lease renewal due date.
You might expect that the more you pay in commercial rent, the more you will receive in return, such as a better business location, a better unit within the building, and so on.
However, this is far from true in all cases, and massage business owners often sign long-term lease agreements with exorbitant rental rates. With time, patience and knowledge of what to ask for, massage tenants can often negotiate far more reasonable rents.
Whether you are looking to open your first massage clinic or move your operation to a new location, there are many demographic aspects to take into consideration. These include the following:
How old are the people living in a particular neighborhood? The answer can have an impact on your business.
For example, if you locate your practice near a retirement community, you may attract more business from senior clients—but if your specialty isn’t geriatric massage, you may not want to set up shop there.
Type of Homes
Are people in the neighborhood living in apartment buildings or luxury homes? The latter group is far more likely to have more disposable income, and thus far more likely to purchase massage more often.
Adding to the previous point, are the homeowners single- or double-income earners? When two people are bringing money into a household, there will be more disposable income available.
As you become known for providing a very personal and unique service, traffic flow past your commercial property becomes less important; your loyal clients will continue to visit you, as they appreciate and value your work.
However, your clinic still needs to be visible and accessible. Consider, for example, if your customers have to turn left across a busy roadway and in front of oncoming traffic to reach your parking lot.
Lack of visibility for your clinic can cause people to drive right by it, especially if traffic is heavy. Trees in a parking lot can block signage and restrict visibility for drivers passing by, for example.
So can pad sites—free-standing sites in front of major buildings; for example, a fast-food restaurant built in front of a large strip mall. Some landlords may overbuild a pad site near the road, thereby blocking the visibility of the retail plaza behind it.
Remember, as a massage business owner you can renegotiate any part of your lease agreement—except the physical location. Selecting the right property, and even the right space within the property, is like laying the first brick of your business upon which every other brick is laid.
Dale Willerton and Jeff Grandfield—The Lease Coach are commercial lease consultants who work exclusively for tenants. They are professional speakers and co-authors of Negotiating Commercial Leases & Renewals FOR DUMMIES (Wiley, 2013). For a copy of their free CD, Leasing Dos & Don’ts for Commercial Tenants, email a request to JeffGrandfield@TheLeaseCoach.com. Got a leasing question? Need help with your new lease or renewal? Call (800) 738-9202, email email@example.com or visit theleasecoach.com.