Feature

Beyond the Boilerplate: How to Negotiate the Force Majeure Clause

August 20, 2019    
It’s among the least appreciated parts of the lease. But while rent, renewal, and other business terms command most of the attention, the so-called force majeure clause takes center stage when disasters occur. It’s at that point that both landlords and tenants recognize the importance...
Pop Quiz

Does Lease Termination Let Rent Guarantor Off the Hook?

August 20, 2019    
SITUATION: A tenant leases restaurant space with its principal acting as guarantor. Under the guaranty agreement, the landlord is allowed to show the tenant leniency and make lease modifications, extensions, or amendments with the tenant without notifying the guarantor.
Owner Wins

Disposing of Tenant Property After Lawful Eviction Isn't Conversion

August 20, 2019    
What Happened: When the tenant and surety didn’t show up for the eviction proceeding, the court awarded the landlord default judgment. The landlord then sent the tenant and surety notice to collect their personal property and disposed of the stuff when they didn’t respond after seven...
Owner Wins

Lease Bars Tenant's Claims for Lost Profits During Renovation Work

August 20, 2019    
Section 7: [T]here shall be no allowance to Tenant for a diminution in rental value, and no liability on part of Landlord by reason of inconvenience, annoyance or injury to person(s), property or business arising from the making of any repairs, alterations, additions or improvements in or to any...
Owner Wins

Increasing Tenant's Real Estate Tax Share Isn't Fraud or Lease Violation

August 20, 2019    
What Happened: A shopping center lease requires the anchor tenants, which are also partial owners, to pay a fixed part of the property’s real estate taxes, and allocates the remaining tax liability to the non-owner tenants proportionally on the basis of square footage leased. The problems...
Feature

The 12 Dos & Don'ts of Food Hall Leasing

July 23, 2019    
Although the restaurant business is notorious for fads, the food hall has demonstrated that it’s more than just the flavor of the month. Like its cousin the mall food court, the food hall is a mix of retail eateries sharing space within a larger facility. The difference is that food halls...
Plugging Loopholes

Standard Entry Clause May Not Give You Right to Inspect Space

July 23, 2019    
Landlord shall have the right to enter tenant’s space at any time to examine the same, and to make repairs, replacements, and improvements [emphasis added].
Watch Your Language

'Maintenance' Costs Pass-Through May Not Require Tenants to Pay for 'Security'

July 22, 2019    
Like many owners, you may require your tenants to pay a proportionate share of your operating costs in maintaining the common areas. If the intent is to include site security in these costs, you better spell it out; simply assuming that security is an implied part of “maintenance” costs...
Owner Wins

Not Constructive Eviction to Cut Tenant's Electricity If Lease Allows It

July 21, 2019    
What Happened: To the owner, this was an open-and-shut case: The fashion store tenant it evicted owed unpaid rent. To the tenant, it was more complicated than that. The tenant contended that the owner committed constructive eviction by cutting off its electricity. The court sided with the owner,...
Owner Loses

Owner Wrongfully Withheld Tenant's Security Deposit

July 21, 2019    
What Happened: After 30 years of running a Dunkin’ Donuts out of the space, a tenant decided not to renew the lease. The tenant left the space broom-clean and removed all the counters, shelving, display cases, and doughnut shop-related furniture. The owner claimed the premises weren’t...