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What should I look for when signing a commercial lease?

On Behalf of | Nov 30, 2020 | Commercial Leases

Many business owners lease commercial space for their offices, especially when starting out. Because signing a commercial lease is a huge commitment, it is crucial that you enter into the agreement fully informed.

Forbes explains a few possible issues often found in leases so you can take the right steps to avoid them. By watching out for the following, you can rest assured that the lease you choose is in your best interest.

Pass-through utility costs

Most commercial leases include terms that stipulate tenants must pay for a portion of the utility costs, while the property owner takes care of the rest. Pass-through costs should be proportionate to the amount of space you are leasing. If you are expected to pay for utilities your business does not even use, it is best to keep looking for a suitable commercial property.

Undisclosed fees

Commercial leases are often complex. As a result, it is hard to determine all the hidden costs and fees that may be lurking beneath the fine print. That is why you or your attorney should request a full breakdown of all fees prior to signing. That way you have an opportunity to get clarification on fees that seem unnecessary or redundant.


If your business is thriving, there is always a chance that you will need more office space in the future. Accordingly, it makes sense to secure a commercial lease with the ability to scale up built in. Otherwise, you may find yourself on the hunt for a new location when your existing lease is up and the office no longer meets your needs. Think about your plans over the lease term: Will you be hiring more workers? Do you have new products under development? Are planning on acquiring other businesses? If yes, scalability should be a priority.