Online Alerts

Call All Tenant Payments 'Rent' or 'Additional Rent'

December 1, 2021    

Commercial property owners should ensure that their leases describe all tenant payments and charges as either “rent” or “additional rent.” While it might seem like a legal technicality, using these terms ensures you access to fast-track eviction if the tenant later...

Pop Quiz: Why Was This Relocation Clause Unenforceable?

November 3, 2021    

SITUATION: With long-term plans to redevelop its mall, a Connecticut owner made it a point to include relocation clauses in leases with a restaurant tenant in an area slated for new construction. The clause also gave the owner the right to terminate the tenant for refusing...

Don't Inadvertently Give Defaulting Tenant an Option to Buy

October 5, 2021    

The last thing any landlord wants is to allow a tenant to purchase the property while it’s in default. Unfortunately, that’s exactly what you might have to do if the purchase option clause in your lease contains a common loophole.  

Keep Guarantors on the Hook for Attorney’s Fees

September 8, 2021    

Guaranty agreements may cap how much the guarantor has to pay if the tenant defaults. For example, the agreement may say that $100,000 is the most the landlord can collect from the guarantor. If you include dollar caps in your own lease guaranties, just be sure that they exclude attorney’s...

Specify in Lease that 'Attorney' Can Send Notices

August 3, 2021    

It's important to make your notice to a tenant valid if your attorney sends it. If a tenant violates your lease, you're probably required to notify the tenant in writing that if it doesn't cure—that is, correct—the violation by a set deadline, you can take action against...

Don't Let Today's Rent Breaks Limit Tomorrow's Rent Increases

July 13, 2021    

Granting rent concessions and abatements (which we’ll refer to collectively as “abatements”) has become standard operating procedure in these troubled times. But before you engage in the practice, check your lease for a loophole that can limit how much of a rent increase you...

Can Tenant Waive Landlord’s Duty to Mitigate Damages?

May 28, 2021    

A restaurant tenant isn’t happy about what it deems to be the landlord’s inadequate efforts to market the mall and abandons the property. Instead of immediately seeking a replacement, the landlord lets the space remain vacant and sues the tenant for rent.

We didn’t...

Don't Use 'Supervise' or 'Administer' When Describing Management Fees

May 6, 2021    

When describing management fees that you'll pass through as a CAM cost or an operating expense, don't depend on synonyms for “manage” or “management” to convey your meaning. If you use only the words “supervise and administer” or “supervision and...

Did Tenant Waive Landlord's Duty to Mitigate Damages?

May 4, 2021    

A restaurant tenant isn’t happy about what it deems to be the landlord’s inadequate efforts to market the mall and abandons the property. Instead of immediately seeking a replacement, the landlord lets the space remain vacant and sues the tenant for rent.

We didn’t...

Is Broker Entitled to Commissions on Renewals that Occur After a Client Sells the Property?

April 6, 2021    

SITUATION

The owner of commercial property comprised of two buildings with an adjoining lobby hires a brokerage firm to find a tenant for the space. The broker lines up a tenant. The lease runs five years and requires the “Owner” to pay the broker’s commission for the...

Court: Pandemic Isn't a 'Casualty' Event

April 6, 2021    

What Happened: Another retail tenant has failed in its bid to use COVID-19 as an excuse for not paying rent. The tenant in this case was a New York City outlet of national retail chain The Gap, which claimed, among other things, that the pandemic and its resulting shutdowns...

Should You Let Nonprofits Use Vacant Space Temporarily?

February 22, 2021    

Q: Is there any benefit to letting a local charitable or nonprofit organization temporarily use vacant space in a center to collect donations, sell or distribute merchandise, or give out information about their programs?