This page is also available in: Melayu (Malay)
Renting an Office in Malaysia is Pretty Easy, as Long as You Commit to the Legalities
Malaysia is a beautiful place to set up a business. For some, it is a food haven, where most of the time you can find your favourites. For others, it could be the tropical weather and a relaxed environment. For business owners, Malaysia still has its attractions in terms of tax incentives, financial supports as well as general ease of doing business. Not to mention, friendly people and hardworking workforce. As a result, you will need to find the ideal office space to begin operating in Malaysia. Let’s get started with this Malaysia office premise leasing guide.
Credible Business Worth
Even if you are a small company or a representative company, your business needs a physical business address. It is mandatory for a company registered in Malaysia to have a business address. For starters, maybe it would be a virtual business address. But for your future success, it is worthwhile searching, Googling, hunting, and renting a business space. It shows the credibility of your business organisation to your clients. Most businesses will begin with renting an office space, enough for their current capacity. Once they expand and can afford a place of their own, there is a possibility of leasing larger areas or even purchasing a property. But, let’s get you and your business into knowing what matters most when renting an office premise, right here in Malaysia.
On Your Part
This is your office and You need to figure out how much space do you need. For starters, you might only need a desk and a comfortable working area. Nevertheless, if you are heading towards tremendous growth and your current capacity is more than ten employees, you would need a proper office premise. So start by calculating the ideal space for your business capacity. Give and take; you will need a decent reception area, discussion room, utilities and a server room if any. If you can accommodate extra space for future growth, even better so that you will reduce shifting costs later on. Only then should you figure out the location of your office. Bear in mind that offices nearby transportation hubs and varied amenities will demand higher rental rate. But, your clients will probably be within the same areas as well. Thus, carefully decide between accessibility and profitability. Sites such as KL Sentral, KLCC and The Golden Triangle has steep rental rates and very popular with foreign companies.
The Process of Rent
The following is a general Malaysia office premise leasing guide to how the rental process works.
- You and your team (if any) will need to engage a property agent with office premise leasing expertise.
- Once you decide on the space you need for your office: then the hunt is on based on your rental budget and business proximity to necessary conveniences.
- The agent should shortlist available office for rents based on your requirements and budget.
- Schedule for office premise viewing. During the viewing, have a checklist ready so that you will remember which premise suits the business. Remember to ask questions to the agent such as if the premise owner allows for renovations, furnished or not, is parking part of the premise rental and any other requirements relevant to your business operations.
- Decide and initiate negotiation with the premise owner. If your agent has an outstanding record at this, let them negotiate.
- Once both parties agree on the rental rate, you have to pay the necessary deposits.
- Sign the tenancy agreement between you (The Tenant) and the premise owner (The Landlord). There are administrative fees for preparing the tenancy agreement, and the tenant will bear the cost. Do note if the tenant is a foreigner, there is such a thing as “Diplomatic clause”. The clause will take effect when the tenant needs to terminate the agreement earlier. He or she must provide supporting evidence so that the balance of rental payments will be waived. The tenant must also provide notice of vacating premise three months in advance.
- Once signed, the agent will have it stamped at the Malaysian Inland Revenue Authority. Only then the document is a valid legal document.
The Price to Pay
When renting an office in Malaysia, tenants should be aware of the price tag that comes with it. While monthly rental is one matter, there are other costs a tenant will have to fork out when leasing a business premise. In this Malaysia office premise leasing guide, we provide you with a broad range of costs that would add up to your monthly rental payment.
Before Moving In Costs
Earnest deposit or booking fee, security deposit and utility deposit. The minimum is a month of rental rate for each deposit. As a tenant, you may want to furnish your office to suit your office planning; thus, there is a cost to purchase furniture.
This includes monthly rental, utility bills, and parking fee (if the premise has no parking allocated). There are tenancy agreement fees and stamp duty cost borne by the tenant. It occurs from the first tenancy agreement and subsequent agreements. Depending on the landlord, some landlord may cover the stamp duty costs, while some may request the tenant to pay for it.