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Tips for Negotiating a Commercial Lease

Posted on: May 24, 2015

Negotiating a commercial lease can be quite daunting with all of the details that can be involved, and that’s why it’s always helpful to hire a South Florida real estate lawyer. The cost to hire an attorney is minimal compared to the amount money that you can lose on an unfavorable deal. Your attorney can offer a level headed perspective when negotiations become heated and do everything possible to ensure that your lease is favorable. This will give your business the greatest chances of success and ensure that your commercial lease ends up being an asset and not a liability.

Your attorney can help you negotiate the term and rent

The term of the lease and your rent are two of the most important negotiations when it comes to a commercial lease. Your attorney can give you advice on what a “good deal” on rent should be for the specific location that you are interested in. In many cases you will want flexibility on the term of your lease, and your attorney can advise you on what the best length of time might be. You also don’t want to be hit with any unexpected rent increases during the term of your lease, and your attorney can ensure that the contract protects you from these increases or makes them predictable.

Watch out for extra expenses that you might be liable for

You need to be careful about any extra expenses that your landlord might want to make you liable for such as maintenance costs, shared facility upkeep and other costs. Also, you will want to determine how utilities are going to be charged to you (by square footage or by meter readings). If there are any hidden fees or costs, your attorney will catch those fees and renegotiate the lease if necessary.

Ask your attorney to add in clauses to protect your business

There are several clauses such as exclusivity and sublease clauses that a South Florida real estate lawyer can add into your agreement. A sublease clause can allow you to sublease your space when you need to move out, and gives you an exit strategy if the location does not work out for you. It also gives you the flexibility to move into another location and grow while avoiding breaking the lease. An exclusivity clause can prevent the landlord from leasing a nearby property to one of your competitors. You also almost always want to have renewal options available, especially if your business is difficult to move or your location is particularly important.

For help with negotiating a current or upcoming commercial lease, contact Mark Schecter at Schecter Law today for a consultation.