Not all warehouses are created equal. The longer you are in the game, the more you realize that it is difficult to find a warehouse that was built for someone else and repurposing it for your current and ever-changing needs. We’ll quantify needs and then think through which markets possess the buildings that best fit those needs.
Tenancy Type: Warehouse properties come in many shapes and sizes. Locating within a multi-tenant business park can come with many advantages like having the landlord take care of all exterior maintenance and having onsite staff. Single-tenant properties work better for security, autonomy, privacy, and control. Which type does your company need?
Ownership Type: Warehouse properties can be owned by individual investors or institutional investors. Private owners can offer an option to purchase, more flexible lease terms and often lower rental rates. Institutional investors, on the other hand, can offer substantial tenant improvement allowances, higher image, newer construction and the highest clearances for distribution. Which owner would be best for your company?
Ceiling Height: Warehouse ceiling range from 9′ to over 40′ in height. Racking can come in all shapes and sized to accompany your needs. Manufacturing machines and equipment have their own height requirements? Do you use a part sorting machine, store raw materials in large totes with handles, pour raw food ingredients into a sorting machine? Is product stored and stacked or racked? What are the different components in your business operations that have ceiling height concerns?
Office Square Footage: Warehouse properties will have an office component that will need to be modified to suit your needs. How many employees will be in traditional office space? How many need offices? What size office? How many employees are in workstations? What make, model and size of workstation? Are high-end office improvements a benefit to your team? At what cost? Are their employees in shop or warehouse offices? Do the truck drivers need their own access and break room? Are there any lab areas, quality control, assembly or testing areas that need to be built within the warehouse? What common areas are important for visitors, conferences, training, private phone calls, etc.
Parking: Warehouses car and truck parking vary greatly from less than 1 parking space for every 1,000 SF of building to 3.5 parking spaces for every 1,000 SF of building. How many parking spaces are needed for cars? Is street parking necessary? How many trucks, trailers or containers do we need to park when they are not at the loading docks? How many shifts will we run? Who are our neighbors and how does that fit with our operation?
Power: What is the maximum load of our total machines? Do we need 3 phase power? Where does the power need to be distributed to? Who should pay to remove the conduit upon lease expiration? What is the cost of pulling more power to the building if there is not enough? Who does that? How much does it cost? Is that cost prohibitive?
Loading Doors: Do we need grade level roll-up doors or dock high loading doors? With dock high loading doors, can we use interior loading doors or must they be exterior loading doors? Will containers be left at the loading door? What is the height of the dock loading door? Are dock levelers needs? Are manual dock levelers sufficient or do we need hydraulic levelers? Who will pay for them? Do any of the current levelers need to be replaced?
Yard: Yards are generally only available with single-tenant industrial buildings. Do we need a yard? What size is ideal? Does it have to be fenced? What kind of fencing is sufficient? Will we need to install a scale in the ground or above ground? What dimensions are necessary? What are your security needs? Can the yard be crushed aggregate, dirt, asphalt or concrete?
Truck Court: What size trucks are going to be using the docks? How many at the same time? What is the distance from the dock door to the wall? What if there is a shared truck court? Who is across from you? What is their usage? How does that affect your shipments? Where do trucks go while waiting to load? Where do trucks enter and exit? What does the flow look like? Truck drivers are known to be miracle workers when getting in and out of tight spaces. Make your driver’s life easier by choosing a property with ample truck court dimensions.
Sprinklers: What will be stored in the warehouse? How will it be stored? Who is your material handling consultant? Do you have a high pile permit consultant? What forklifts will you be using? How high will you be racking? Are their plastics or foam stuffing in any of your products? What is the class of commodity that you are storing? Have you spoken with the fire authority? What are the fire calculations of the existing warehouse? Has it been tested recently? What about the water pressure? Will the sprinkler system have to be upgraded? Can it be upgraded? At what cost? Who will pay for this? How will build it? How long will it take? There can be hundreds of thousands of dollars at stake here.
Geograhy: There are 36 cities within Orange County, 88 cities in Los Angeles, 57 cities in San Bernardino and 91 cities in Riverside County each with its own industrial property inventory. Which city has the types of properties that fit the characteristic of your business?
We help people with these types of discussions daily and are happy to help. Please contact Justin at firstname.lastname@example.org and 949-790-3151 to discuss in more detail.