Negotiating a Commercial Lease? Follow These 5 Tips for Better Success!


Leasing a piece of property can be a stressful process particularly if you are trying to find the right space for your business. A lot of people think that there isn’t any room for negotiating rent, particularly when the landlord is the one calling all the shots. Well, think again! As a tenant, you have a right to negotiate to try and get better terms that will benefit you and your company. Here are some of our best tips to help you negotiate a more favorable commercial lease.

1. Research rents for comparable properties.

Whenever you are entering into a commercial real estate deal, it’s important to do your research beforehand to know what type of deal you should be getting. Landlords will always try to get the best deals for themselves, and you should make sure to do the same. By researching and knowing about comparable listings and being able to reference them, you will place yourself in a better position for negotiating and getting the best deal.

2. Review the length of the term.

Sometimes, landlords are more likely to cut a deal if they know that a tenant is in it for a longer term. You can often manage a more favorable price if you’re willing to stay for two, or even five years, versus only one.  You may also want to consider asking for an option to renew at a rent negotiated up front. On the other hand, you may want to think about a kick-out clause that allows you to terminate the lease if you don’t hit a certain gross revenue threshold by a certain year. 

3. Review the Use Clause

Before you sign anything, make sure you that the use that you intend to have is permitted by the local zoning laws.  You don’t want to find that your business isn’t allowed at the property after you’ve already signed the lease and are on the hook.  

4. Request additional, favorable clauses

As a tenant, there are several clauses that are favorable to you that the landlord might not include in the original draft of the lease. Some examples of these clauses include the ability to sublease the property, if you need to. Sometimes things happen that are out of your control, particularly with a business property. Having the ability to sublet the property if you encounter a problem can be a huge benefit and prevent you from defaulting on payment. Or perhaps it is important for you to be the only business of your kind on the property.  In this case, an exclusivity clause may be needed.

5. Contact an experienced attorney for help

Negotiating can be an uncomfortable process, particularly if you aren’t familiar with it or have no experience doing it. That’s why it’s a good idea to consult with an experienced real estate attorney to help. At Ser & Associates, we regularly deal with real estate transactions and, specifically, lease negotiations.  So, please give us a call at 305-222-7282.  We are ready to assist you and your business today!  Also, you may want to ask us about our My General Counsel® program, a cost-effective solution created especially for our business clients.