If you're thinking of starting your own business, or if you're getting ready to change locations for your current business, you're probably anxious to get out the door and start looking at some properties. But rushing into a new location is one of the worst things you can do. You might get incredibly lucky and end up in the right place with the right lease terms — but you're more likely to land in an unsuitable location or sign a lease whose terms will make you miserable for the next five years.
If you're starting a new business, sit down with a pad of paper or a new document on the computer and begin thinking about the following factors that will impact where you look for commercial space:
How much can I realistically afford to pay for space?
How much space do I actually need?
Where do I want to be?
Your location is more than geographic. In a shopping center or mall, the availability of parking, the ease of getting into the complex, and your location relative to other stores are all very important factors.
Should I look at undeveloped properties?
If you're moving an existing business to a new location, your list of questions might be slightly different. After all, this isn't your first rodeo. But even veteran renters can make mistakes, so take a few minutes and ask yourself a few questions:
Why am I moving?
What benefits do I hope to gain by moving?
What's my least favorite thing about my current location?
What's the best thing about my current location?
What kind of space configuration and basic square footage do I need?
When do I need to move by?
Answering these questions will not only help you find the most ideal spot for your business and your budget, but will also decrease the time your commercial agent spends finding it for you!
When negotiating your commercial lease, there are a few things that you should absolutely consider. Including all of the following items in your lease is strongly recommended:
• Corporate entity
• Renewal options
• Assignment rights
• Tenant inducements
Clauses to Be Apprehensive About in Your Commercial Lease
Just as it's important to include certain key terms in your lease, you must also be cautious about what terms are in the lease to begin with and how they may affect you and your business down the road. You may want to remove or adjust some of the following items:
• Percentage rent
• Radius restrictions
• Demolition clauses
• Default clauses
• Relocation clauses
At First & Main, we're experienced in all phases of lease negotiation and renegotiation. We know what to look for and how to protect you from potential pitfalls. Remember, there is never a cost to the lessee in a lease negotiation! And we're happy to review even existing leases to advise you how to handle renewals.