From a pandemic virus to a drop in interest rates by the Federal Reserve, it’s been a rough start for 2020. But whether the turbulence proves to be short-lived or not, this change in volatility just underscores the value of being well prepared to handle any unexpected economic challenge as a business owner. That includes the leasing challenges one may face when leasing commercial real estate space.

If you’re wondering, where to even begin, fear not. My book, SimpLEASEity helps business owners win the game of commercial real estate leasing. The book, which focuses on leasing and buyer/tenant representation, provides guidance on how to navigate leasing uncertainties and explains potential challenges business owners could face. It offers scenarios and recommendations to help you even the odds in leasing office, medical, industrial, and retail space.

Andrea Davis, CCIM, has practiced commercial real estate for more than 20 years.

Despite the disruptions in the market and economy due to COVID-19, it’s important to remember that challenges can bring new opportunities. The actions you take during this time could affect the future of your business. I’ve included a few tips that I hope will be useful for businesses that are searching for their dream office and negotiating a lease:

• Hire an experienced tenant representation to guide you through the entire lease transaction – at NO cost to you so you can have your dream office without breaking the bank.

• Define a lease transaction timeline from touring to move-in, allowing at least 6 months from your initial tenant rep meeting.

• To be sustainable, the office needs to support the business and be less than 12% of your operating expenses.

• Understand the balance between economics and location. A high-profile location is sexy and costly, yet not always necessary to conduct a successful business.

• Define your space requirements ahead of time. Poor utilization of space is where companies lose a lot of money. Often the landlord will pay for a space plan.

• Purchase an industry guidebook, like SimpLEASEity™, that guides you through the lease process, provides details to find the perfect location, explains how to negotiate a killer lease and put more money into your business instead of your landlord’s pocket.

• Everything in a lease is negotiable. Don’t settle for an ok deal.

• Always have agreed upon lease terms in writing! In disputes, the written lease rules.

It is too soon to know the outcome of the pandemic and how the country will fair. One thing is for sure. It’s never a bad idea to take control of your long-term interests and feel confident knowing your business is protected. SimpLEASEity™ can help with that.

For more information about leasing and seizing the best market opportunity for your company, contact Andrea Davis.

Andrea Davis, CCIM, has practiced commercial real estate for over twenty years. Davis’s breadth of knowledge stretches from developers to landlords to buyer/tenant representation and investments. Within the commercial real estate industry, Davis has won numerous awards. The Phoenix Business Journal ranked Andrea Davis CRE in the top 10 of Ranking Arizona for the category of Office Brokerage. Her book, SimpLEASEity™, focuses on leasing and is the first in a series of commercial real estate guidebooks. Her next book, Simply Own It, the American Dream, is forthcoming this year.