A Guide to Office Lease Negotiation
Guide to Office Leases
Now that you've narrowed down your search of office space and are looking closely at those that, for the most part, meet your basic office space requirements, it's now time to hone in on the more complex issue of office lease negotiations.
This can be a real minefield, if you've never been involved in negotiating an office lease before, but with a little preparation and the right Property Agent by your side, you'll secure a lease that fits your business and financial requirements perfectly.
Here's a basic guide to what an office lease is and the sort of terms you're likely to encounter:
The Importance of an Office Lease
An office lease is an extremely important document when it comes to renting commercial office space. It's a legally abiding agreement between you and the Landlord, and the terms you agree now will be set throughout the whole term so it's important to negotiate hard to get what you want.
Here's some things to consider at negotiation stage:
Length of Term
The average office lease is between 4-6 years, and it's wise to stick within these perimeters. Whilst longer office leases may offer more incentives, they also lock you in to a contract you may not be able to get out of. Small businesses in particular, need to be mindful of the financial commitment of signing a longer office lease.
Condition of the Space
If you are leasing existing space, is there any modification needed and how much will you have to pay for and how much will the landlord cover? Work out the costings of the office fit-out in this Moving Office Budget Template, and make sure you have the funds to fit-out the office to the spec you want.
Maintenance can be a very controversial aspect of the lease and is where most disagreements between the tenant and landlord will occur. Make sure you understand who is responsible for maintaining the common parts of the office building, i.e. who is responsible for such things such as light bulb replacement or common area cleaning.
Top Tip: Always consult with a Property Solicitor before putting pen to paper!
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