Have you ever been handed a document to review and sign only to find that you don’t quite understand the entirety of it? If so, you aren’t alone. Many new business owners who are looking for property to lease are often required to sign a contract which serves as an agreement between both parties that stipulates the terms of the agreement as well as the legal obligations of both parties.
While it is important that a lease agreement exists, sometimes, they are rather difficult to understand. And the last thing you need to be doing as a new business owner is signing your name on a line without knowing what exactly you are committing to. Therefore, for the purpose of this article, we are going to be focusing on why you should hire a business law attorney to review a commercial real estate lease, although our reasons can be applied if you are signing any type of document pertaining to your business.
The first thing you have to recognize is that as a new business owner, you are likely going to encounter new things you have never seen before. There may be many clauses in the lease that are unclear, and you may not be getting everything you want in the agreement but are unaware of this. That is why we are sharing some reasons below as to why you should consider having a business lawyer review the lease with you prior to signing it.
- Your lawyer can help you understand the lease terminology. There may be certain words or acronyms used throughout the lease that you may not recognize. For instance,The Balance points out one, CAM, which stands for Common Area Maintenance. Every tenant is usually required to pay a percentage of the CAM and it is an additional expense that is added to your rent. Because these types of leases tend to be 50 or pages, you can bet there will be plenty of words or phrases you won’t know.
- An attorney can help you determine if you negotiated the best deal possible. Your lease will stipulate what your responsibilities are as a tenant, what you pay each month, the rights of the landlord, etc. and you need to be sure you are getting the best deal possible. Some things your attorney can help you consider is whether your rent payment is fair based on the location of the property or whether your landlord is taking advantage of you and holding you responsible for things that would otherwise be their duty to handle.
- They can help negotiate signing as a personal guarantee. While many individuals once could sign their lease using their business name only without putting their personal name on it, today, most companies want you to sign with a personal guaranty. This means that if you were to break the terms of the lease, you and your business would be responsible for the remainder of your lease term. The landlord would be permitted to take legal action against you by filing suit against both you and your company for the outstanding amount still owed for the lease. So, while it may difficult to get out of having to sign as a personal guaranty, your attorney can help negotiate with the landlord so that you aren’t obligated to pay back so much in the event you have to break the contract.
If you want to feel more confident in your business decisions, it is best you allow a Fort Lauderdale business law attorney to help you along the way as you make them.
There are plenty of other reasons why it would be beneficial to both you and your business to hire a Fort Lauderdale, FL business law lawyer or real estate attorney would be happy to explain what these reasons are. The truth is, a real estate attorney can review your lease prior to you signing it to ensure it is clear, accurate, and free from any discrepancies. So, if you are someone who is looking to start a business in Fort Lauderdale or expand on the one you have already established, contact this firm today so that one of these knowledgeable attorneys can help you feel more confident with your new business ventures.
In the event you have already established your business and are looking for legal advice regarding how to create a safe and hazardous free work environment for your employees, contact a FL employment law attorney through USAttorneys.com.