In order to define Cat A+, we should first clarify what is meant by Cat A and Cat B – two firmly established terminologies that describe the design and build work that takes place in a commercial building.
What is Cat A?
A Cat A fit-out is typically implemented for a landlord and means a commercial space is finished with the basics like lights, electricity, water, services, and a coat of paint. Prospective tenants take the space as-is and refurbish to their tastes.
What is Cat B?
Cat B design is the turning of a basic space into a workspace ready for a company and its people to move in. From AV equipment and internal partitions, through kitchen workstops and wall art, our team consults with the tenant and creates a fit-for-purpose solution complete with branding, a defined layout, and all the finishing touches of a fully bespoke office
Cat A+ is in the middle. It’s requested by a landlord but almost as comprehensive in design as a tenant’s instruction, striking a balance between a blank canvas and specific and instructed office design.
A Cat A+ office is finished with all the practical pieces and ready for immediate occupation once a tenant takes the lease. Tenants are typically offered minor branding opportunities in a high-quality workspace handed over with amenities, furniture, tech and services already in place.
What are the advantages of Cat A+?
- Tenants can move in and start working straight away
- Attractive lease terms with minimal up-front costs to the occupier
- Shorter vacancy times for landlords
- Comparatively low investment to deliver an attractive space
- A tenancy can be re-leased with minimal updates
Is Cat A+ the same as co-working?
Cat A+ spaces are independent leases, not shared working spaces. Both options have their advantages, but co-working doesn’t come with a branded front door – or benefits like security, privacy and personalisation. Cat A+ is a better alternative to co-working when companies are ready for an authentic and independent workspace without the upfront investment in custom (Cat B) office space. It’s a differentiator in a competitive commercial property market.
How Thirdway led the Cat A+ category
Thirdway pioneered the Cat A+ movement in 2018, and we’ve remained at the leading edge since. We work with forward-thinking landlords and insightful developers to deliver a better solution for small businesses, ensuring the product attracts the right type of tenant.
- Designed for flexibility
- Inclusions catering to specific industries
- Focused on the people
- Cost-effective commercial transformations
While our projects remain unique, Cat A+ is now a well-recognised industry term and practice.