Couple sitting at the desk in the law office and signing business agreement

Negotiating a business lease is a critical step for any business owner. It sets the groundwork for your company’s physical location and will impact its operational efficiency and profitability. Negotiating the terms of your business lease carefully is key to ensuring that your business interests are protected and that you are treated fairly. Critical to successful negotiation is having a strong, well-informed real estate attorney represent you. If you are seeking one in New York or New Jersey, you need look no further than Merlino & Gonzalez. 

Our legal team is committed to ensuring that every clause and term of your lease serves your best interests. Contact us today. Our savvy representation during negotiations of your business lease may be just what you need to give you the edge that will further your business success.

Elements of a Business Lease That Can Be Negotiated

Our familiarity with the real estate markets in New York and New Jersey, as well as our in-depth knowledge of real estate laws in both locations, gives us an advantage when it comes to negotiating:

  • Price We understand how price is calculated, including base rent, escalations, and additional fees (e.g. utilities and maintenance).
  • Extensions and renewal terms We will negotiate for extension clauses and renewal terms that provide you with a firm foundation going forward.
  • Modifications and improvements — Discussing the ability to modify or improve the property and who will be responsible for the costs is important since changes may become necessary as time passes and your company grows.
  • Dispositions — These involve negotiating terms related to subleasing or assignment, providing flexibility if your business needs change.

Negotiating Proactively To Prevent Future Conflict

Proactive negotiation is key to preventing conflicts and ensuring smooth operations throughout the lease term. Therefore, the following should be considered:

  • Estoppel certificates to certify the current status of the lease and any agreements between the landlord and tenant.
  • Lease termination/surrender agreements to set clear terms for ending the lease, including notice period, condition of the property upon return, and any penalties for early termination.
  • Non-disturbance agreements to ensure that the tenant can remain in the event of a foreclosure, as long as they are not in default.
  • Property management agreements to clarify the roles and responsibilities of property managers.
  • Subordination agreements to determine the lease’s priority in relation to existing or future mortgages.
  • Term Sheets, though non-binding, can provide a blueprint of the lease’s terms to prevent misunderstandings.

Negotiating Disputes That May Arise Once the Lease Is Signed

Even with thorough planning and negotiation, disputes can still arise during the lease term. Merlino & Gonzalez is equipped to handle a variety of post-signing disputes, including:

  • Landlord-tenant disputes that may involve issues ranging from maintenance and repairs to lease compliance and eviction proceedings. 
  • Zoning and land use matters can significantly impact your business operations. Our team is adept at navigating these complex regulations and can represent your interests in negotiations with municipal authorities or in legal challenges.
  • Bankruptcies and restructurings can have significant implications for future lease terms. 
  • Rent increases and additional fee disputes are smoothly handled by our adept attorneys who know exactly how to deal with inappropriate rent escalations or unexpected fees.
  • Repair and maintenance obligations must be met by landlords and our lawyers will see to it that they are.
  • Lease renewal conflicts can arise when there are disagreements over rental rates.
  • Sublease and assignment disagreements may occur concerning the rights to sublease or assign the lease.
  • Operational Restrictions are frequently related to operating hours and signage.
  • Early termination is something we can successfully negotiate if it becomes necessary. We will work hard to minimize penalties and protect your interests.

Why Our Real Estate Attorneys Are Strong Negotiators

At Merlino & Gonzalez, our legal team has the well-honed skills required for agile negotiation. Once you become our client, you will realize that our excellent track record is no accident. We have the credentials, background, determination, and staying power that all first-rate negotiators need to get the job done. 

More than that, when it comes to negotiating a business lease, we have the comprehensive knowledge of real estate law and the insight into commercial New York and New Jersey properties that can only come from over 20 years of focused experience.

Contact Our Proficient Real Estate Attorneys Today

One of the keys to having a successful business is understanding the potential consequences of your acts. Another is making good use of well-informed professionals. Consulting with Merlino & Gonzalez before negotiating a business lease incorporates both. As soon as you get in touch with our offices, you will understand why we are the right choice. We know that your business lease is one of the foundations on which your company’s stability depends and we will work tirelessly to make sure it is solid and well-crafted.