Breaking the Commercial Real Estate Barrier for Small Businesses

OfficeSpace.com is number 199 on the GeekWire 200. The site is a destination for tenants in the market for office space and other types of commercial real estate. OfficeSpace.com aggregates listings from a variety of sources and presents them in a user-friendly search, much like Zillow and other sites do for homebuyers. What’s special about OfficeSpace.com? For starters, you can view the listings for free. Yes, that is special in the commercial real estate market. If you visit the leading providers CoStar and LoopNet, it quickly becomes apparent that simply searching for office listings is going to cost you. For those of us who own or manage small businesses, this can raise a frustrating barrier to the simple act of getting started. OfficeSpace.com recognized that small businesses were not well served in the commercial real estate market–and a majority of businesses are small. A 2012 report in GeekWire describes how the company re-focused after being purchased in 2010 by entrepreneurs with ties to WhitePages. With its eye on the market for smaller spaces, OfficeSpace.com offers a simple interface without the extensive research and analysis capabilities offered by those other providers that are geared especially for real estate pros. By giving small businesses easy access to listings, OfficeSpace.com provides a service to commercial brokers, presumably making it easier for them to work on transactions that would otherwise yield a lower return on their time invested. Simple economics would suggest that exposing all willing buyers to what you’re selling will promote a more efficient market. OfficeSpace.com may just be the catalyst for participants in the small office market.

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