Getting the best deal in your commercial lease: part two

Last week we discussed the benefits of negotiating a commercial lease with your landlord, including the possibility of lower costs and other favorable terms in your contract. Business owners who choose to rent space should be aware that negotiating their commercial lease can pay off.

We’ve already touched on the importance of becoming familiar with the terms of your lease and seeking the help of a broker or attorney who can act as your advocate. Beyond that, there are several additional ways you can make your commercial lease agreement work for you and your business.

Plan ahead

If you’re happy with your current space, thinking long-term can help you ensure that you get a good deal on your lease. If you are willing to take out a multi-year lease you may have more leverage to ask for lower rent or additional perks. Many landlords would rather keep a tenant for several years than find a new one, even with some concessions.

Limit your costs from the beginning

If you are considering a multi-year lease, try to build in a cap on expenses like management and operating fees. Otherwise you could find yourself stuck with rates that rise every year, which can seriously add up over time.

Be on top of it

Asking for modifications on your lease shortly before the contract is up is not likely to get you the deal you want. If you like your space and want to stay, start working with your landlord several months ahead to allow adequate time for negotiations. This also gives you an opportunity to find new space if you can’t reach an agreement that meets your needs.

Paying too much for a space or ending up in an office that doesn’t meet your needs can have serious implications for your business. Work on getting the best deal on your commercial lease. Consider consulting a business law attorney with experience in commercial lease matters. They can represent your interests and help get the best possible result out of negotiations.

Source: Free Enterprise, “How to Negotiate Better Commercial Leases,” Deanne Katz, Oct. 25, 2012

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