We spend most of our waking hours at work. Whether you’re a business owner, freelancer, or solopreneur, it’s important to choose a coworking space that will make you feel energized and productive. But with so many shared office spaces to choose from, how can you make sure that you choose the one that’s right for you?

We’ve picked out the most important things to consider when choosing a coworking space, so you can check them off next time you’re shopping around:

Find the Right Location

According to NPR, a long commute is the No. 2 top thing that Americans hate the most in their daily lives (right after housework). With Miami traffic and, err, unique driving etiquette, choosing a coworking space that’s close to where you live, or has public transportation options nearby, will save you stress, time, and gas money.

The coworking space’s proximity to shops and restaurants is also something you should consider for convenient lunch and happy hour options.

Join a Community

Collaboration opportunities are probably the biggest advantage of working in a shared office space. You never know when you’ll meet your next client, creative partner, or yoga buddy in the communal spaces.

When looking at coworking spaces, pay attention to what they offer to foster connections amongst members. Do they have a communal area? Do they host events where you can meet other community members?

Another thing to consider is what professions other community members work in, and whether your skills will be a good fit for partnership opportunities.

Find Your Ideal Environment

Have you ever walked into a place and gotten a “vibe”? Gut feelings are something we underestimate – they tell us important things that we can’t necessarily see, but feel.

When visiting coworking spaces, pay attention to the vibe that you get from the environment. Is there natural lighting? Do people seem happy? What’s the culture like? Chances are, a shared space where you identify with the culture is the one where you’ll be the happiest and most productive.

Choose Your Office Type

Now for the practical side of things: you need to find a space that accommodates what you need to work. If your work calls for a private space, flexible desk, or conference room use, make sure that the coworking space you choose has those options.

If you’re a creative professional that makes films or takes photos, you may want to look into a coworking space that has studios and post-production facilities where you can produce your work (Ampersand happens to be the only coworking space in Miami that offers full-service, in-house production facilities!).

Non-Negotiable Amenities

Different coworking spaces offer their own combination of amenities, so make sure the one you choose offers the amenities that you need. Create a list of non-negotiable amenities that you would need in a coworking space, and check them off when you’re shopping around.

Some features to consider:

  • High-speed Wi-Fi
  • Staffed reception
  • Color printers
  • Pet-friendly
  • Free coffee
  • 24/7 access
  • Lockers
  • Phone booths

Fit Your Budget

Finally, make sure that you find a coworking space that falls within your price point. Almost all coworking spaces offer varying levels of privacy and office sizes so you can find the option that suits your needs and budget.