Five tips to negotiate a commercial property lease

News at Stirling Ackroyd | 29/08/2019


Five tips to negotiate a commercial property lease

Leasing your first commercial property is a major accomplishment for any business, big or small. But it does involve several big decisions and some even bigger commitments too, so companies will need to ensure they are prepared.

To help you do just that, here are top five tips so you can negotiate a commercial property lease smoothly.

1)    Know what you want in advance

Imagine your ideal business space. Map out what your budget is and how much you have to spend? Also, think about the specific clauses you need including in the contract? When you know precisely what you want in advance of starting any negotiations, you will find the whole process far more manageable. Likewise, before you do anything, spend some time reading up on commercial leases so you feel confident enough to have the right conversations and can ask for what you want.

2)    Timings and get out clauses

It’s always worth asking for a break clause in the contract as this gives you a right to end the lease early. Make sure you know all your key timings too. It may sound obvious, but know when your rent is due; whether its annually, quarterly or monthly. Put it in the diary and set a reminder. Forgetting to pay your rent on time can be a very costly mistake. If your contract is up for renewal, set a reminder to speak with your commercial property agent in good time so you can make new plans if needs be.  

3)    Free perks? Yes please

It may be hard to haggle with corporate landlords over things like the lease structure or base rent, but corporate landlords are in a unique position where almost everything that goes to the building must go through them. This means that things like WIFI, parking and utilities can be thrown in for free! If you don’t ask, you don’t get.

4)    Who looks after what?

When negotiating a contract, make sure you know who is responsible for what. For example, repairs can be costly, so factor in these costs if they are your responsibility. Most landlords will want tenants to take on at least some of the repairs, but if bigger jobs need doing, like changing of carpets or replacing facilities, ask for these to be completed before your move date. Always ask for a copy of the landlords building insurance too. You can check the terms of it and the premium so you know how much you may have to pay if there is an accident to the property or repairs need to be made.

5)    Hire a professional

Before jumping headfirst into your search, consider hiring a professional. Lawyers and estate agents know their stuff, and they are there to help. The process of gaining business premises might be ‘a once in a (business) lifetime experience’, but for Stirling Ackroyd, this is what we do every day. We’ll be able to translate the business jargon for you into real language, act as a mediator and most importantly, successfully get you into your new building with a great deal on the lease.

To find out more about the commercial properties on our books or to speak to one of our experts about your commercial property needs, email us today.