If you have just signed a commercial lease in the state of Florida, there are several reasons why you should have your attorney look over your agreement. A commercial lease in Florida is a contract that exists between a landlord and tenant allowing a tenant use of commercial property. This lease agreement sets out the terms and conditions of the tenancy, including without limitations, the amount of rent, the length of the lease, any obligations for the payment of additional rent, as well as the responsibilities of both parties. Commercial leases are generally longer than residential leases and the rent is most often more. The standard commercial lease typically contains plans for the renewal or termination of the lease. If you are a commercial tenant and own a business, you need to be sure that your commercial lease is in order and that it meets your expectations. You do not want to sign a lease and later discover that it does not protect your interests or is not enforceable. This is why is it important that you have a Hollywood commercial real estate attorney review your lease and negotiate the terms of it before you sign the dotted line.
Complications With Commercial Leases
A complication that is seen quite often when dealing with commercial lease agreements is the issue of allocating responsibility for the payment of any taxes that are owed or will soon be due. In many cases, the tenant is contractually responsible for paying the local tax collector for property taxes that are owed on the leased space. This is often a costly expense, especially when the property is located in a preferred area where property taxes are higher than other places in the state. This is why it is imperative to address each party’s responsibility when it comes to the payment of taxes as you negotiate the terms of the lease– not after the agreement has been signed.
Insurance poses another potential complication. In some commercial lease agreements, the landlord may require the tenant to purchase an insurance policy for coverage on the leased space. This may be a substantial addition to the tenant’s business expenses, therefore it is recommended that a tenant confirms whether the insurance is the tenant’s obligation and get an estimated cost for a policy prior to securing a lease.
Another potential complication that could arise involves any prohibitions on how the premises may be used. In some cases, the lease agreement might stipulate that the leased space may only be used as a retail store and could include prohibition against any other use of the property while under the signed lease. Such restrictions can limit a tenant’s ability to fully utilize the space. Be sure to negotiate your lease that suits the needs of your business.
Having a commercial real estate attorney on your side can help you ensure that your commercial lease is valid, that it addresses mutually agreed upon terms, and that it conforms to all applicable laws. Your attorney will be able to negotiate with your landlord on your behalf to make sure that the proposed terms and conditions are addressed in the proposed lease.
Key Things To Look For In Your Commercial Lease
A commercial lease in the state of Florida should include…
- The names of the landlord and tenant(s)
- Any personal guarantors to the lease
- The address and legal description of the leased premises
- Accurate square footage or rentable area of the leased premises
- The term of the lease (i.e. one year, five years, etc.)
- Date that the lease begins
- Any terms regarding the renewal of the lease
- Amount of rent and how it is to be paid (monthly, annually)
- Documented payment of a security deposit and any additional rent to be paid
- Purpose of the lease (restaurant, retail space, office space, etc.)
- Respective responsibilities of both parties, landlord and tenant — covering who is accountable for any repairs or maintenance of the property per the lease.
- Any restrictions on the use of the leased property
- Consequences in the event that the lease is defaulted on, such as eviction, loss of the security deposit, fees for necessary repairs
Your attorney will be able to help you understand the terms and conditions of the lease and ensure that they are fair. They will also be able to negotiate with the landlord on your behalf to help you get the terms needed for your business to operate.
What Does An Attorney Look For?
When you hire a real estate attorney to review your commercial lease, they will check for several things. To begin, they ensure that the lease is enforceable, that it covers all material terms, and that it abides by all applicable laws. It is then up to your attorney to negotiate the terms of the lease with your landlord on your behalf so that they are in your favor. Finally, your attorney will assist you in addressing any problems that could arise involving your tenancy during the terms of your lease.
Your attorney will help you understand all the terms and conditions written in the lease. They will also be able to negotiate terms within the proposed lease with the landlord, so the terms are suitable with your needs. This is why we advise our clients to wait until they’ve had a real estate attorney review their lease before signing it.
If you are considering leasing a commercial property in Florida, be sure to contact an experienced attorney to review the proposed lease agreement. Our team of attorneys at Estevez Law Group can help you understand the terms of the lease and ensure that the terms are fair and protect your interests and those of your business.
About Estevez Law Group, P.A.
Helping clients with real estate, commercial real estate transactions, residential property purchases and sales, estate planning, and more! Skillful legal representation can simplify complex real estate transactions and solve problems that frustrate all parties involved. At the Estevez Law Group, P.A. our boutique real estate law firm and title agency assists clients with all types of residential and commercial property matters.
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