Managing Partner, Robert M. Steeg, was recently interviewed for an article, “Tips to Negotiate a Favorable Lease for Your Business, that was published on LowesForPros,” Lowes’ website that provides the latest news, resources, tools and advice from the “Pros” for builders, developers and other small business owners and managers in the construction, home building, and facility management industries.

As noted in the beginning of the article, it’s no easy task to work out a deal for a satisfactory lease, especially if you’re new to the business. But, once you know what to look for and ask for, you can negotiate the right lease for your office or retail space.

As Steeg says, “It’s especially advisable to have a real estate attorney look over the lease before you sign it to avoid the many pitfalls associated with real estate.”


  • Be mindful of your facilities needs and make sure they’re not things your landlord can take away or change. For example your office building may have plenty of parking at the start of your lease, but it’s possible that won’t be the case later on if your landlord wants to turn parking spots into more leasing space.”
  • Failure to fix an essential service in a timely manner is another potential problem. If the elevator in your office building breaks and isn’t fixed within the amount of time stated in the lease, you should be able to refuse to pay rent.
  • Most landlords insist on personal guarantees, meaning that the tenant’s personal assets are at stake if he doesn’t pay rent on time. Because of that risk, it’s important to register your business as a corporation or LLC so the legal entity is the responsible party.
  • If you can’t get out of giving the personal guarantee, persuade the landlord to place limitations on the guarantee to limit the exposure to personal assets. Once you have established a good track record for paying rent, the risk to your assets can decrease over time and eventually be eliminated.

LowesForPros is the dedicated Lowes website for professionals in the home building industry that provides news, tools, and advice from industry pros.

Filed under: Commercial Real Estate, Industry News, Leases
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