Leasing Lowdown – 6 Things to Check Before Signing a Commercial Property Lease

If you are a first-time business renter, you may be feeling overwhelmed by the plethora of challenges that come with renting a commercial space. Signing a commercial property lease is one of the most important factors in getting your business up and running, but getting to the dotted line can be difficult.

Several things you should check before signing a commercial property lease:

1. Take Time for Searching the Right Location

Searching for the perfect location for your new business can be nerve-wracking. It requires deep research and planning as the location will greatly impact your business’s ability to succeed. 

Take your time when searching for the perfect spot, and don’t make any rash decisions. If you think you’re ready to sign a lease, stop. Take an extra day or two to think everything through before signing on the dotted line. Your commercial property investment advisor can help you work through all your concerns. 

2. Get a Commercial Real Estate Agent

The leasing process for a commercial property is more complex than that of a residential property. If you aren’t familiar with it, you’ll want to get yourself a real estate agent who is well-versed in commercial property rental. 

If you don’t know whether you’re an ‘A’ or ‘B’ class tenant or if you qualify for leasehold improvement incentives, a commercial real estate agent can help explain these things and more. Don’t go alone just to save a buck or two as it could end up costing you far more than an agent fee. 

Recommended reading: How do Packers and Movers determine Their Moving Fees or Charges?

3. Are There Additional Costs Besides the Rent?

When you lease residential property, you’re usually responsible for more than just the rent and utilities. You may incur additional monthly charges that fluctuate at the whim of the landlord. 

For example, the commercial property lease may state that the rent will not go up, but the landlord may pile on additional fees for things like housekeeping, security, landscaping, garbage pickup, etc. that can change without warning. So, it’s vital to understand every charge for which you may be liable. 

4. Don’t Be Afraid to Negotiate

No matter how much you love the place, don’t accept the landlord’s first offer. It’s likely been inflated to see how much they can get out of you. Be willing to walk away. If the landlord understands right away that you’re willing to leave the deal on the table, you will present yourself as a strong negotiator who isn’t playing games.

Recommended reading: Tips For Downsizing

5. Be Open-Minded and Do Your Homework

When you searching for the right location for your business, keep an open mind. What you thought would be the perfect location may turn out to be not so ideal after all. Be willing to look at multiple places, and don’t pass on something that seems less than ideal at first. You may find that a location you hadn’t thought of before turns out to be the perfect place to run your business. 

6. Get First Right of Refusal

Be sure your lease gives you First Right of Refusal. This states that should the landlord decide to sell the building, they’ll have to offer it to you first before putting it up for sale to the public. 

Commercial property leasing can be a challenging prospect, especially if you’re a first-time business owner. It’s easy to make mistakes, but if you find a good commercial real estate agent, follow the above tips listed, you should be able to avoid the more common pitfalls and navigate the commercial leasing world with ease. 


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