Coworking Vs. Traditional Office Space – Which is Right for You?

27 June, 2019 / Alan Rosinsky
Collaborative NYC Business Team Thrives in Modern Coworking Office Space.

Finding the right office space is a vital component of your company’s long-term success. It requires a thoughtful assessment of the available commercial spaces for rent to prevent the need for future relocations. Additionally, an ideal office should meet your architectural needs, allow for future expansion, and be situated in a convenient location for both employees and clients, all while staying within budget.

Therefore, the question arises: which office space suits your business – traditional or coworking?

Coworking is On the Rise, But Is It for Everyone?

When looking to lease office space in Manhattan, the most critical consideration is the space that best suits your needs. Your workspace reflects your brand, company image, and business niche, sending the right message to attract clients. But which space is suitable for your business?

Coworking spaces are more popular than ever, and WeWork, Regus, or Industrious spaces are available on nearly every corner. Many large and small companies prefer coworking over traditional office spaces, causing a shift in the market. So much so that WeWork is now Manhattan’s largest occupier of private office space

However, coworking is not for everyone, and leasing your own ‘traditional’ office space offers some critical advantages.

Therefore, weighing both options’ pros and cons is crucial to choose the best office space for your business.

The Pros of Leasing Coworking Space

Leasing coworking space offers a range of benefits for startups and early-stage businesses. By working alongside other entrepreneurs and specialists in different industries, you can build professional relationships, take advantage of networking opportunities, and boost your brand’s exposure. Here are some of the pros of leasing coworking spaces:

  • Flexibility, networking opportunities, and readily available office space.
  • Working alongside other entrepreneurs and specialists in different industries to build professional relationships and take advantage of networking opportunities.
  • Furnished and wired.
  • More cost-effective for teams of 2-5 than leasing a demised space
  • Coworking spaces offer licensing agreements that can range from month-to-month to even week-to-week, providing startups or businesses that are uncertain about their future growth with a great deal of flexibility. Moreover, choosing short-term agreements allows these companies to avoid being locked into a long-term commitment and adjust their operations as needed. This is particularly beneficial for companies that are still in the early stages of development, where the future is uncertain and the ability to pivot quickly is crucial.

The Cons of Leasing Coworking Space

While coworking is an affordable option for small businesses or startups, it may not be ideal for growing teams and comes with several drawbacks:

  • Coworking spaces can become expensive as your team grows.
  • Coworking spaces offer little customization of your workspace.
  • Some coworking spaces allow you to license private offices, but that fundamentally changes the economics.
  • If coworking spaces have an open-office layout, it can be distracting and unproductive. You may share space with people from other companies, including competitors.
  • Another factor is a lack of transparency regarding pricing, hidden costs and automatic renewals at certain facilities that can drive up costs.

The Pros of Leasing Traditional Office Space

Leasing your own traditional office space in New York City may be expensive. Still, it can provide a significant boost to your business. Here are the top benefits of leasing a traditional office space:

  • Having a Manhattan address can attract clients and employees.
  • Leasing your own office signals stability and long-term commitment.
  • Renting your own traditional office can positively impact your company’s image and prestige in fields like finance or law.
  • Tenants can customize industry-specific office spaces to fit particular business needs.
  • Personalizing your office space can help build your brand. Private offices typically permit branding such as signage, while branding is generally not allowed in a coworking/flex space facility.

The Cons of Leasing Traditional Office Space

Leasing your own traditional office in Manhattan can provide a good company image and prestige. However, it also comes with some drawbacks to consider:

  • Leasing your own office can be expensive, particularly if you have a small number of employees.
  • You’ll have to pay for utilities, maintenance, and build-outs.
  • Traditional office spaces offer less flexibility, and expansions may not be possible.
  • Desirable coworking amenities like quiet nooks, game rooms, and nap rooms are more expensive or may not be available.
  • Networking opportunities are limited or nonexistent.
  • Leasing a traditional office space requires the review of complex lease agreements by a real estate attorney, which can cost several thousands of dollars.

The Key Takeaway: How to Decide

If you are still trying to decide which office type suits your needs, it’s time to concentrate on your business plans. Begin by assessing your current position, short-term and long-term goals, employee count, budget, and niche. In addition, reflect on the message conveyed by your brand and company image and ascertain which office type best aligns with that message.

Given the intense complexity of the New York City commercial real estate market, it may be worthwhile to enlist a specialized tenant broker to help you decide what type of office space is better for your business.

By carefully considering all these factors and seeking expert guidance, you can ensure that your office space aligns with your business objectives and provides the necessary resources for your team to thrive.


Are you looking to set your business up in a prime New York City location? Are you dreaming of a modern building with state-of-the-art amenities? Contact us. We’ll show you a worthwhile space that fits your business needs. To learn about available office space, call Metro Manhattan Office Space at (212) 444-2241 or email us at [email protected].