Leasing space in a commercial complex is one way to test how successful your company performs before purchasing your space. Before entering into a lease, ensure it contains elements that protect you.
Commercial real estate owners want to make money, but landlords have to perform under specific lease terms. Become familiar with these before locking yourself into a lease.
Is the property zoned properly?
Not all commercial property has a zoning designation to fit your business needs. For example, you may want to open a restaurant in a building zoned for retail only. Getting this designation changed is not always possible, and as such, ensure the lease you are signing contains the proper evidence that your business can function within the current zoning.
What does your rent go toward?
The breakdown of rent payments in commercial leases varies. Make sure you understand how much rent you pay and what that, in turn, pays for. Does it go towards common area maintenance, or will the landlord charge you special assessments? Does a percentage of your profits dictate the amount of your rental payment?
Can you assign your lease?
If you need to close your business for any reason, such as the recent labor shortage, you do not want to remain stuck with lease payments. Ensure that your agreement contains a provision regarding transferring your lease in the event you close or move away.
Having a second set of eyes review your lease before signing may go a long way in ensuring you set yourself up for commercial success.