Class A, B or C, which type of property offers the best work environment for your company?
New York City is constantly changing and evolving, and office buildings are no exception. Office buildings in NYC have traditionally been categorized using a scale of A, B and C class. The premier buildings, “A” Class, are the most prestigious addresses with the highest rents in the marketplace. These properties offer full service leases that include a 24/7 attended lobby, on site management, cleaning services provided by the landlord, and new or updated lobbies. Class B buildings are generally older but have similar services to Class A buildings with more reasonable rents. Class C properties are lowest classification for office buildings. Class C buildings typically have limited or unattended lobbies and are located on side streets; usually there are minimal services included in the lease.
Which type of building is right for your company? When I first speak to a new client, one of the first questions I ask is, do you need a 24/7 attended lobby. If the answer is yes, that immediately eliminates the Class C buildings, since even if in the rare cases they have an attended lobby, it is usually only for working hours and the lobby can only be accessed by key or buzzer nights and weekends. The distinction between A Class and B Class is primarily a question of budget, and if there is value for your company in paying a premium, for either your employees or clients, in having a Class A building with a more prestigious address.
The thing to consider is that these classifications are broad and incorporate many factors. Within Class A and B, the categories breakdown further to “A+” (Glass and Steel modern full service buildings), “A” (Fully renovated older buildings with similar amenities like the Empire State Building), “A-“(Class A buildings in need of updating or updated older buildings on side streets), and the pattern holds for B and C buildings as well. Ultimately, I say, you can not make a Lexus out of a Model T, and the same holds true for buildings.
Lastly, within the A, B and C building Categories there is a range of owners and management styles, from outstanding to poor, that differentiate properties. At Winslow & Company, we know from our 25 years of experience representing tenants and working with landlords in New York City, all the nuances of every building and landlord. After listening carefully and determining your requirements, we will both evaluate the buildings along with the landlords to make sure you get the best space in the best building within your budget, that is on the market, and there are no surprises. Our job does not end when you sign your lease either. We follow up and stay involved throughout your lease to make sure that the landlord delivers on all their promises.