Commercial Law Services on the Gold Coast For Landlords: CJM Lawyers can help you protect your investment by ensuring that the tenant is obliged to maintain the premises so that when they move out, you do not have to spend a fortune bringing the premises “up to scratch” again before you can find another tenant. If a tenant is breaching the lease, you cannot just lock them out. CJM Lawyers can help you through the technical processes required to regain your property and to recover any arrears of rent and damages. Retail Shop Leases are a “minefield” for the landlord — put one foot wrong and your lease could “explode” costing you tens of thousands of dollars. For safe passage through the minefield, see CJM Lawyers first. For Tenants: Standard Lease There is no such thing as a “standard lease”. Each business is unique and each business has its own requirements. There are some pre-printed forms of leases, but these are neither “standard” nor necessarily appropriate for your business. Agreement to Lease Do not even sign an “Agreement to Lease” before you see CJM Lawyers, because the Agreement to Lease often contains unfavourable provisions to be included in the new lease but which we might have been able to save you from, had we seen the Agreement to Lease beforehand. Directors Guarantees If you take a lease in your company’s name, you will probably be required to sign a directors guarantee. These guarantees can leave you liable for the default of a stranger after you have sold the business. CJM Lawyers can negotiate to limit your liability to only that period that you have control over the business. Term of Lease A “3 x 3” (i.e. a three-year term with a tenant’s three-year option to renew) might be common, and suitable for an established business. If you are just starting out however, you may be worried about committing yourself to a three-year lease if the business does not succeed in its first year. CJM Lawyers will help you negotiate for something more suitable, such as a one-year lease with two, three year options. At least at the end of the first year you will have a better idea of how the business is progressing and can decide whether to continue or not. Did you know that if you sell the business, you might still be liable if the purchaser does not pay the rent? Do you know what a “ratchet” clause is? Are you protected if the Landlord sells the property (with your business in it) to someone who wants to get rid of you and redevelop the complex? For the answer to these questions and for sound legal advice, contact CJM Lawyers.