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3 important issues to address before signing a commercial lease

On Behalf of | Dec 14, 2021 | Real Estate Law |

Finding a commercial property that will work for your business is an exciting moment. You need to have facilities before you can announce your move or complete a merger.

It’s important that you not let excitement overshadow your rational mind. The terms of your commercial lease will affect your business’s finances for several years. There are certain terms that you may want to review or negotiate before you sign the lease.

How much you pay for maintenance

If your landlord passes along the majority of maintenance expenses to you, then you should be able to rely on them for repairs at the facility. If you share spaces with other tenants, what you pay should be fair based on your use.

Looking at how they balance what they charge you for common area maintenance (CAM) fees with your likely use of shared spaces can help you negotiate. If you will have far fewer workers than another business occupying the same amount of space, your need for parking will be less, and that might affect what you ultimately pay.

What happens if you want to leave?

Commercial leases usually last for several years. Your obligations to your landlord could persist even after you rent another property or the business goes under. Negotiating circumstances in which your lease obligations end, such as after unpredictable events or when you find a new tenant to take over the space, can protect you from long-term financial obligations.

Limitations on your use of the space

Many landlords impose restrictions on how their tenants utilize a space. They may restrict operations to one industry or require advance notice for any change in how you use the space. Looking at any restrictive covenants in the lease carefully can help ensure you don’t run afoul of them later if you adapt your business model.