Tenants only rent office space a few times in the course of their corporate careers, whereas landlords are immersed in the leasing process all of the time. Here are some tips that can help you as a tenant close that gap in expertise between tenants and landlords:
1. Carefully think about your operating concerns. Consider the mechanics of how your company operates when you are reviewing the lease. Think about different issues you might not have been aware of at first glance:
• HVAC service after hours – is it available and what does it cost?
• Does your business make higher than average noise levels at certain times?
• Do your employees like to do things like cook using a microwave during the day, which might be forbidden in the lease?
2. Don’t forget about the workletter. There are a few different parts of a lease agreement, including legal points, business points, and the workletter, which is the final negotiation component. The workletter often deals with things like the dollar amount of an improvement allowance that the landlord will give the tenant, and will state which party has to pay and the consequences if the cost of improvements is over the amount allotted by the landlord.
Sometimes tenants are not aware of all of the details they should be looking at when negotiating a lease, so doing a little research and taking a good look at your business’s needs before starting the process might be in your best interests!