Finding a new location for your business is exciting, but it is also one of the biggest financial decisions and commitments you will make. Commercial leases can be fertile grounds for lawsuits and headaches. Sadly, a business lawyer is often only called in AFTER problems arise, and business owners are shocked to find they have signed documents with far-reaching, unexpected, and possibly painful economic consequences.
Counsel Can Help At All Stages of the Move
You are, no doubt, a savvy businessperson, but a business lawyer is specifically trained to spot the issues that can blow up and sabotage your operations — and advise you how to avoid them. A skilled business lawyer can help you with advice and representation from the beginning of your property search through the successful negotiation and signing of the lease.
Counsel can help with the initial commercial lease discussions with prospective landlords, and having legal help at the outset of negotiations can help you get better terms. You will be sure that the final lease document is airtight, even-handed, and gives you necessary protections – many of which you may not realize you need.
Commercial Leases are Complex: Have Your Lawyer Draft It
Your lawyer can explain how commercial leases are structured and what the language means. Property owners and brokers (and their lawyers) don’t make this easy on their tenants, by creating lease documents that are complex, difficult to read, and often full of real estate jargon.
Putting a lawyer on your side can help you spot issues and terms that should be included in a comprehensive business rental agreement. These matters include much more than just the core terms: rent, term, and property description. There are many other expenses and hidden charges.
A prime example is the section on HVAC repair and maintenance obligations. Who is going to be responsible if the air conditioning breaks down? Who should be? You probably can’t run your retail or office space in our sweltering South Florida heat without cooling.
Who will identify and correct pest infestations? Who will pay to repair falling ceiling tiles? What are the common area charges, and how will they be calculated? These are just a few core issues that should be addressed in your commercial lease.
An incomplete, ambiguous, or heavy-handed commercial lease is trouble waiting to happen, and many of these problems can be avoided (or greatly minimized) if you seek and receive timely, competent legal advice and assistance. Here at The Law Office of Brandon Woodward we are ready to help you with drafting and negotiating your business’s commercial lease.