LONDON: A new venture called Hermit has launched, with a proposition intended to re-energise the commercial office sector. Its premise is simple: small businesses working from residential homes, using the space while the homeowner is at work. A Hermit home-office has many of the standard features you get in commercial office space, but in a more comfortable, convenient and cost-efficient package – better suited to small businesses.

Co-Founders Max Jezierski and Samuel Roberts started the company having identified a void that exists between conventional offices and the recent phenomenon of co-working spaces. They claim that the former has become prohibitively expensive, with particular areas of London seeing rental costs increase by 50% in the past five years. Meanwhile, co-working can fit the needs of leaner enterprises or freelancers, but often fails to offer private and dedicated space at an affordable cost. Co-Founder Max said:

“Homes can provide everything a small business needs: dining tables become desks, sitting areas become meeting spaces, kitchens become hangout areas for the team. Co-working spaces are brilliant, but businesses reach a stage in their growth where they need private space, have greater numbers of employees and more tailored working requirements. That’s the industry void, and it’s our niche.”

Pricing is Hermit’s trump card – the website claims that home-offices can cost half of their commercial equivalent. Hermit also provides services that include full insurance cover, property management and ongoing support for businesses and homeowners alike. The Founders are equally eager to relay the benefits to homeowners:

“Living in London is extortionate. With Hermit, homeowners are renting out their space during hours when it’s not being used. The same business uses it each day and pays rent in upfront monthly instalments. This is a sharing economy model that can provide longer-term income to property hosts and have a genuine impact on the efficiency of space usage in the capital.”

Hermit has now launched. Visit www.hermitoffices.com for more information.