Fighting the Good Fight – Lease Negotiations


In about an hour, I will have a conference call finalizing the lease document for one of my clients.  We’ll have the client, me, the leasing agent and the landlord’s attorney work through the final lease comments.  Oftentimes these calls go smoothly, but on occasion someone doesn’t have a reasonable expectation and that’s where I come in.

Recently I had a landlord that did really not understand who the tenant was and was making outrageous demands on security deposits and insurance.  The tenant and I were dumbfounded – it was similar to telling Lebron James to wait in line.  I got everyone on the phone to discuss the situation and the landlord had his “ah ha” moment and backed down.

Sometimes this works the other way.  I had a great tenant who is very knowledgeable about office leases and the potential options and terms that are often provided.  Yes, they are right about many of their comments and yes, a commercial office lease favors only the landlord and rarely the tenant.  If they occupied a significant portion of the property (10%+), I would have pulled every rabbit trick out of my hat.  This wasn’t the case for them.  I had to manage their expectations and let them understand that while the landlord valued them, it just wouldn’t let a small tenant dictate certain conditions.

It takes 40+ pages to cover all the bases, but at the end of the day, for an institutional landlord, they just want you to pay rent and be happy.  If you pay your rent on time with little unwarranted fuss, you are a fabulous tenant.  If you have a landlord that is attentive and proactive with property management, you are lucky.  If you don’t, give me a call.  I strike fear in the heart of landlords because they know I level the playing field for tenants.


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