Running a studio is no small task. You’ve committed to building upkeep, work tirelessly to market your business and develop programming to keep clients coming back every week. That’s a lot of work, especially if you have a small team. Since you can only work so many hours in a week without being spread too thin, you might consider amping up your studio’s revenue by renting out excess space. The space is there there and useable — so if it works for your class schedule, why not allow someone else to utilize the space in your downtime?
In addition to garnering additional revenue, you’ll invite a new and diverse audience of visitors into your business. While they might be there to see another practitioner during your off-peak hours, they’re exposed to your brand simply by being in the room. If your renters are fitness instructors or wellness practitioners, this can create a nice cross-population client-sharing model; you’re inviting a new audience to check out what you do and pique their interest to return. Here are a few things to think about when offering up your space for rent.
Dedicate a space for wellness practitioners
A great way to make the most of your space at all times of day, including non-peak class hours, is to create an inviting space for specialists: nutritionists, massage therapists, acupuncturists, counselors, even speech therapists. If your current space doesn’t have an extra room, consider investing in walling off a corner or researching wall partitions. Offer a few small touches to encourage potential practitioners to sign on, such as a cozy lounge area, a sufficient desk area, and/or practical storage space. Work alongside interested parties to create a schedule and payment plan. You may choose to keep consistent renting schedule week to week, or negotiate with your subletters to book the room as late as day-of, pending availability. Try creating an online calendar with availabilities and share with interested subletters.
Invite guest teachers to rent your space
Freelance instructors may not be on your permanent teacher roster, but they may be interested in renting out the space for occasional classes or workshops. Reach out to your network or try contacting teachers without a dedicated space to consider your studio as rental option on a one-off basis for special classes or trainings. In addition to teachers and professionals in your genre, expand your reach by considering adjacent professionals who could use the space such as theatre performers or community influencers.
Gain exposure for your rental space
Explore platforms that allow you to list your rates and studio amenities. Join local social media groups for fitness professionals in your area, or try a website like GymLynx that allows you to promote your space and book renters directly — an added bonus of insurance and pre-screened renters makes for a little more peace of mind.
Promote what makes your space special and different
You’ve put a lot of work into making your studio unique and comfortable, so play up these benefits while promoting. You’re taking a lot of hassle out of business set-up for them, including lighting, internet, restroom facilities, janitorial (as applicable), etc.. Consider which of these you can offer to renters and why these would be enticing benefits given how they’ll use the space.
Think outside the box
Your space may be more versatile than you think. A yoga studio could double as a space for wellness fairs or small events; a CrossFit box could be a great venue for workshops on nutrition or presentations of new gear for sports of all kinds. Check out wedding event sites and other party planning tools to list yourself as a non-traditional event space, too — you may be surprised by the number of people looking to host their next event in a space as special as yours.
Make it easy for your renters (and for yourself)
Clearly spell out expectations for renters in a rental contract. You should also require them to have liability insurance that is separate from what you already possess. To limit the amount of supervision — from you or a front desk attendant — spell out the rules and handy things renters need to know about the space in an accessible place in the building. You may also consider installing a keyless entry so renters can access the space without you. The more seamless the experience for your subletters, the more they’ll use your space and the more revenue this will generate for your business.