Leasing commercial real estate is not like renting residential real estate. There is so much more that you need to do to make sure that you are protected if you choose to rent commercial real estate. Here are 3 important things that you need to understand before you choose to lease commercial property.
1. Hire A Lawyer
It is imperative that if you choose to lease commercial real estate, you hire a lawyer. One of the major differences between residential and commercial real estate is that there are no standard forms for the contract. This means that the majority of the contract is subject to negotiations and changes.
When you are renting a residential property, you might be temped to just skim the contract and assume everything is straightforward. However, a commercial contract is not that simple. Instead, the party that is renting the property can draft the contract to fit their specific needs. They can choose how long the property will be leased, the cost of the rent, and any other terms of the lease. If you do not look over the contract well enough, you could agree to terms that you cannot meet. This is why you should have a lawyer advise you on the contract before you sign it.
2. Negotiate Insurance
Something that many people fail to address is who is in charge of insuring the property. Some owners of the property will choose to get insurance, but this insurance might only cover the owner in the case of an emergency. This means if there were a fire on the property, nothing inside the office would be covered. Thus, you could lose all of your belongings, work product and anything else that isn't part of the infrastructure. In addition, if you cause the damage you might be responsible to pay. For this reason, you should be very clear about who will insure the property.
3. Be Clear About Improvements
When many people move into an office space, they make improvements. For instance, they might change the light fixtures, bring in extra furniture, paint, etc... If you make any changes to the property, you need to be clear about who will keep the improvements and who will pay for them. In most cases the cost of the improvements will be yours, but they will belong to the landlord. Before you make any improvements, make sure you are clear about if you own them or not.
Here are just a couple things you need to understand about leasing commercial property. Contact a trusted real estate group, such as Western Realty Group Inc, for further assistance with these and other steps.