Leasing Commercial Property

Leasing commercial property can be an overwhelming process with many factors to take into consideration. It calls for many informed decisions and for good advice from a real estate professional. When leasing commercial real estate, you can learn from the knowledge and skill of a Commercial Real Estate Agent.

What can a Commercial Real Estate Agent do to help you lease the right property for you?


  • They will help you determine exactly what type of property you need, not only for your needs today but for future plans in your business.
  • Providing client level services, they can work for you as a tenants rep and help negotiate the best price and terms for you.
  • They will help you work out a realistic idea of the property and location best suited to your needs - size, style, features, accessibility to transportation and zoning concerns.
  • They have access to a listing of all available properties in the multi-list system, can evaluate them in terms of your needs and affordability, and will not waste your time showing you unsuitable buildings.
  • They can often suggest simple, imaginative changes that could make a property more suitable for you and deliver better value over the term of the lease.
  • They can supply information on real estate values, taxes, utility costs, municipal services and facilities, and may be aware of proposed zoning changes that could affect your decision to lease.
  • Although the law does not require an attorney to review documents or oversee real estate closings, they can provide you with a list of law practitioners to choose from if you would like to use the services of an attorney.
  • They can help familiarize you with the terminology used in the leasing industry.
  • They can provide you with a list of qualified commercial builders, design professionals and help to coordinate appointments.


Top 10 Tips to Successful Commercial Real Estate Leasing

Tip #1: Know the Market

You need to have an understanding of where the property types that you desire are located and what the going market rates are. Only by talking experts, and spending time looking at different properties, areas and layouts, will you find the right building for your business objectives.

Tip #2: Make A Plan And Think Long Term

Every important decision needs to be clearly thought out. Developing an location plan can help you focus on the important factors and organize the entire process.  Leasing should be a long term strategy in your business planning. A thorough plan will save both time and money!

Tip #3: "Value" Verses "Cheap"

The days of long term leases that have no rent increases have passed.  Today, you need to guard against unrealistic rent increases while guarding against the possibilities of being pushed out for a better paying tenant. Landlords have differing motivations in the

negotiation of a lease. Knowing this helps you shape a deal that gets them the most value while protecting your interests.

Tip #4: Create A Top 10 List Of Amenities

When looking for a location, list the features (signage, parking, overhead doors, loading docks, access to highways, etc.) that are most important to you in deciding on which building to lease. Establishing "your criteria" early on will save time shopping for inappropriate properties and may keep you from leasing the wrong property . As detailed in Tip #3, your top reason for buying a building should be the value you are getting. Some of your top 10 amenities may need to be sacrificed if a suitable property does not exist.

Tip #5: Know Your Lease Types

Commercial lease type vary from landlord to landlord. Triple Net, Gross, Modified Gross and Full service are all lease types you may encounter in your searches. The lease type will drastically effect your cost to occupy a building.

Tip #6: Sign A Lease That Protects You

If you have changes coming up in your business that may require you to change up your space needs, let your agent know up front so they can ask of terms that will protect you from being liable for  space you are unable to use.

Tip #7: Put Yourself In The Landlord's Shoes

Landlords have investment goals, disposition strategy, mortgage refinancing and tenant mix, among other concerns on their mind. Knowing more about the strategy of the Landlord helps you make your lease a win for both parties.

Tip #8: Develop A Build Out Plan

Finding a space that is built exactly to your needs is not always an option. Many times, your will need to build the space you lease to fit your specifications. Who pays for the improvements is something that is negotiated up front and can be the Tenant, the Landlord or some combination of both. Know what that cost is and computing it back into your cost to occupy will help you make a better decision.

Tip #9: Think about Utility Expenses

Ask the age of the HVAC units and the type of lighting. Most Landlords will not have access to the previous tenants utility costs and usage vary widely by business. But knowing what your equipment is will assist your professionals to accurately estimate the excess of utility usage.

Tip#10: Plan Long Term

While a year may seem like a long time, it will be over in a flash. Commercial leases generally are 3-5 years and can include options to extend the term well beyond that. Proper [planning for your long term growth not only saves you from constant negotiations of lease terms, but also looks in a fair rent that meets your budget and keeps you from being pushed out by a tenant willing to pay more or commit for a longer term.