James Mitchell

The traditional office space is shifting away from the boxy cubicle type layout to remote working arrangements. Australia is one of the fastest countries to adopt the concept of coworking and shared office spaces — and it’s not only commercial entities that are cashing in on this demand.

More than half of all coworking spaces in Australia are owned and run under private ownership. With growing demand for more coworking spaces, property owners are converting their idle properties into shared office spaces that bring in profit.

1. Maximize your space

No matter the size of your property, a well-planned layout is essential. Devote a room or two for conference purposes, but make sure the rest of the area has a more organic feel. One thing you should remember is that people who opt for coworking spaces usually look for working setups that are from the traditional office.

Consider installing a mezzanine if you have enough room in the ceiling — this can make the office space feel larger and less constricted. Keep your workspace open and avoid giving it the structure of an actual office. Some coworking spaces even have trained house pets to lighten up the mood.

2. Go beyond the basics

Aside from providing your clients with the basics — such as stable internet connections, comfortable workplace conditions, and proper work areas — you also need to go a bit further. Reserve a small part of your workplace for leisure and stress release.

Consider adding a table for recreational purposes. Add a few board games, a Ping-Pong table, a Foosball table, or just a couple of consoles with the latest games. Add a few bean bags here and there to allow your coworkers to rest and relax at any point during the day. Little extras make your workplace memorable and keep your clients coming back.

3. Set a few ground rules

Business team at a shared space

Shared office spaces have an informal setting bit that doesn’t mean that anything goes. Set strict rules regarding hygiene and behavior. You don’t want sick, disruptive, or even foul-smelling individuals affecting other coworkers in your workspace.

Address problems quickly and make sure everyone in your workplace feels safe and secure. Make a list of house rules that your customers should abide by as well as the consequences if any of them break those rules. Just because they are paying customers doesn’t mean they may disrupt the order of the coworking space.

Opening your property to coworking is not a difficult thing to do. You won’t be making drastic changes or spending a great deal of money. Even regular houses can be used to host a small number of coworkers — and some have actually done so.

So, if you want to get in on this business opportunity, you should definitely look into transforming your idle property to an income generator. You not only earn extra cash, you provide many workers a place to get their jobs done as well. You get to contribute to their personal and business goals. And who knows? You might just be housing the next Steve Jobs or Bill Gates.

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