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  • #978865
    kingsr
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    Hi Soloists,

    I am close to signing a lease for a commercial premise in Sydney. The vendors solicitor has prepared the lease documents and sent them to me. I now have to send them to my solicitor for review and advice.

    The thing is, I currently don’t have a solicitor. I have rung a couple of solicitors (randomly through google search) and they have quoted me between $1200 – $2000 to review a 55 page document.

    I’m not sure If this is the general price for this type of service? It seems a little steep. Can anyone here advise If the price is fair and maybe recommend a solicitor in Sydney (preferably inner west) that deals with commercial leases (business lawyer?).

    Thank you in advance :)

    #1110102
    DavidM
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    Is your retail lease a standard lease agreement? Or does it have modifications? Standard lease agreements are ‘standard’ in the industry and penalties apply for landlords who alter the terms within them and still quote them as being a ‘standard lease agreement’.

    If your lease has modifications, then yes it will need to be combed over by a solicitor. For standard agreements, not so much (because your protected by law).

    Cheers.

    #1110103
    kingsr
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    Hi David,

    What do you mean by a standard lease and a non-standard lease? I imagine all leases are different depending on the property.

    With mine for example, it is agreed that the vendor will remove all internal fixtures (ie dividing walls) and that he will build internal showers etc. Does that classify my lease as non-standard?

    #1110104
    travelmaster
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    Hi Kingsr

    whatever you do, do not sign anything regardless of how “standard” or “non standard” it is without having a professional having a look at it.

    I can give you contact of a solicitor who specialises in this sort of law.

    send me a pm plz and will take it from there.

    #1110105
    kingsr
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    Thanks Travelmaster.

    Yep, there’s no way I planned on signing these docs without professional advice. PM sent.

    #1110106
    Kennethti
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    The “Standard” Lease that is referred to is the Standard Law Society Lease that is commonly replicated, which is actually a fairly good lease. There is no requirement however for the landlord to use this lease. There is actually no additional “protection” at law if the landlord uses this lease – it is just a standard lease that sets out some commonly expected matters to be addressed in leasing property, such as rent, when to pay, quiet enjoyment, etc.

    Depending on the location of the premises or the type of business you are running you may have protections under the Retail Leases Act.

    I can assist in relation to this matter – we are based in Parramatta. Drop us an e-mail with a copy of your heads of agreement and an electronic copy of the lease and we can give you a quote in relation to how much it will cost for us to get involved.

    #1110107
    Anonymous
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    Hi kingsr,

    If it turns out that Kenneth isn’t the right person to help, you might also like browse through this list of Sydney-based lawyers and solicitors from the Flying Solo directory.

    All the best,
    Jayne

    #1110108
    Designsphere
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    Make sure a solicitor looks over the lease before committing so that there are no clauses that may surprise you. A little bit extra up front in solicitor fees will save you with any headaches in the future. Also we advise our clients to clearly confirm what the landlord will be providing in terms of the fitout – depending on the type of tenancy but can include hydraulic services, mechanical, paint, new carpet etc.
    Goodluck!

    #1110109
    Klublok
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    kingsr, post: 122584 wrote:
    The thing is, I currently don’t have a solicitor. I have rung a couple of solicitors (randomly through google search) and they have quoted me between $1200 – $2000 to review a 55 page document.

    That’s about right for a commercial (office) lease if there is going to be amendments/negotiations with the landlord. If you don’t have much bargaining power or you are up against a landlord who is not too keen, then it would be better to go to another building.

    However if you have a keen landlord who is prepared to negotiate, then it is worthwhile having your lawyer to negotiate for you. Some of the key issues to watch out for are:

    1. outgoings – obviously you have to pay for those, but sometimes the landlord’s “standard” lease is not clear on who pays for air conditioning repairs (usually you are only liable for repairs – be careful about the definition), sometimes sneak in obligations to pay for structural damages, or paying the landlord’s expenses in enforcing the lease against you etc. So check the definition of outgoings

    2. market review – usually there is a dispute resolution clause if you don’t agree with the result of the rent review. Make sure this is a fair one

    3. insurance – make sure you don’t have to insure any structural parts of the premises

    4. any requirements for redecoration, especially for a longer lease?

    5. make good provisions – what are you up for?

    6. what happens if the building is not fit for use (after flood, fire etc), do you still have to pay rent, can the landlord relocate you etc?

    #1110110
    eworths
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    This is very valuable information, currently I am looking for a place/shop in the shopping center but in the Heads of Agreement only gave us GROSS lease not NET lease. And sales agent said, they can’t tell us what is outgoings cost in the center. Can you please advice me how to resolve this matter if this come across to you.

    Klublok, post: 123038 wrote:
    That’s about right for a commercial (office) lease if there is going to be amendments/negotiations with the landlord. If you don’t have much bargaining power or you are up against a landlord who is not too keen, then it would be better to go to another building.

    However if you have a keen landlord who is prepared to negotiate, then it is worthwhile having your lawyer to negotiate for you. Some of the key issues to watch out for are:

    1. outgoings – obviously you have to pay for those, but sometimes the landlord’s “standard” lease is not clear on who pays for air conditioning repairs (usually you are only liable for repairs – be careful about the definition), sometimes sneak in obligations to pay for structural damages, or paying the landlord’s expenses in enforcing the lease against you etc. So check the definition of outgoings

    2. market review – usually there is a dispute resolution clause if you don’t agree with the result of the rent review. Make sure this is a fair one

    3. insurance – make sure you don’t have to insure any structural parts of the premises

    4. any requirements for redecoration, especially for a longer lease?

    5. make good provisions – what are you up for?

    6. what happens if the building is not fit for use (after flood, fire etc), do you still have to pay rent, can the landlord relocate you etc?

    #1110111
    Kennethti
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    • Total posts: 415
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    eworths, post: 123316 wrote:
    This is very valuable information, currently I am looking for a place/shop in the shopping center but in the Heads of Agreement only gave us GROSS lease not NET lease. And sales agent said, they can’t tell us what is outgoings cost in the center. Can you please advice me how to resolve this matter if this come across to you.

    Which state are you in? In NSW if the lease is a retail lease, all outgoings must be disclosed before entering into the lease.

    #1110112
    Klublok
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    • Total posts: 70
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    eworths, post: 123316 wrote:
    This is very valuable information, currently I am looking for a place/shop in the shopping center but in the Heads of Agreement only gave us GROSS lease not NET lease. And sales agent said, they can’t tell us what is outgoings cost in the center. Can you please advice me how to resolve this matter if this come across to you.

    As Kennethi said above, if it is a NSW retail lease, all outgoings must be disclosed.

    Or is it a commercial lease? Is it a new complex? Sometimes they are not sure what the body corp is on a new complex. But if it is an existing complex that had previous tenants, then there should be some sort of estimate.

    There are ways to limit your outgoings liabilities – such as negotiating with the landlord that you are only liable for reasonable outgoings based on the proportion of your premises to the whole of the building/complex, insert a clause that gives you the right to have an independent person review the outgoings if you believe it to be excessive, install separate power (if allowed) and water meters or just ask for an estimate from existing tenants.

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