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5 Things to Know Before Signing a Commercial Lease

Posted on: March 10, 2018

Commercial Lease Signing: What You Need To Know

As the first quarter of 2018 continues, you may be in the process of signing a new commercial lease for your business. Below are a few things to know before you commit yourself to any potential space:

Make Sure You Aren’t on the Hook for Unnecessary Costs

Your lease might put you on the hook for certain costs related to common area maintenance (CAM) that you really shouldn’t have to pay. Types of costs that might pop up here include marketing efforts for the landlord, legal fees, and utilities or other costs for other units.

Administrative fees can pop up here as well and many other costs related to permits, taxes, parking lot maintenance, security systems, renovations and more. This is a section that you’ll want to carefully review with your attorney to remove anything that you don’t want to pay for.

Negotiate the Best Deal Possible

Don’t just take the first offer that you are given unless you know for sure that it’s a steal. Most of the terms of your commercial lease are negotiable, including the rent.

You might be surprised at what you can get with just a bit of negotiation. Working with a Fort Lauderdale real estate attorney on this step can be very helpful when it comes to determining which clauses should be negotiated.

Check the Parking Situation Ahead of Time

Before you sign your lease, make sure that there is sufficient parking for you, your employees, and any potential customers or clients. Drive to the space ahead of time to see the parking situation firsthand, and ask the landlord about the number of spots that will be allocated to you.

Determine Who is Responsible for Major Repairs

Some leases make the tenant responsible for maintenance and repairs and the landlord responsible for replacement. Find out who will be liable if a major system fails such as plumbing, heating and cooling or electrical.

These repairs can easily cost many thousands of dollars and pop up unexpectedly, especially if the building is older. So, it’s also helpful to figure out how old the building’s systems are and their current condition.

Figure Out Your Exit Plan

You’ll want to plan for the potential of an early termination of your lease or an exit plan once the lease ends. You can include a right to extend term in your lease if you want to stay in the space.

Early termination options might include a right to sublease the space in the circumstance that you need to move out.

These are just a few of the many areas that will need to be reviewed before you sign any commercial real estate lease. For any questions about commercial real estate leases and negotiation, call Schecter Law today at (954) 779-7009.