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Whether you are considering purchasing your first commercial property or you own multiple commercial properties, you need to understand that there are important differences between owning commercial real estate and residential real estate.  Here are the major points to consider with commercial real estate and landlord tenant disputes in Arizona.

Purchasing Commercial Real Estate in Arizona

Commercial real estate requires a different level of due diligence in order to make sure you know what you are purchasing.  You will need to understand the type of commercial real estate, average income and expenses, how long any tenants are under contract, history of repairs, tax consequences and more.

Commercial real estate agents will certainly be required for most people to complete the process and the agents will earn their commission as they guide you through the lengthy and complicated process.  They will be a large part of getting all the necessary information to complete the due diligence process.  However, these agents will not be able to analyze the tenant contracts or financing deal to help you understand potential legal pitfalls and expenses down the road.  When purchasing commercial real estate, you will find having a team supporting you is the best way to buy.  In addition to a talented commercial real estate agent, look for the representation of an experienced commercial real estate attorney in Arizona to make sure you have a complete understanding of the deal.

Commercial Real Estate Lease Agreements in Arizona

Unlike residential real estate, there are no standard lease agreements for commercial tenants in Arizona.  Typically, the landlord will be responsible for creating a lease agreement that is acceptable to both parties.  There will also be many differences from tenant to tenant depending on what each unique tenant  requires for the businesses.  In some cases, larger corporations may want to use a lease agreement they have created.  You will need the representation of an experienced commercial real estate attorney in both cases.

At MacQueen & Gottlieb, we can draft contracts for any type of lease agreement required for your commercial real estate tenants.  Our firm will help protect your assets and promote an agreement that best serves your needs.  One tenant may only agree to a contract that includes all utilities and improvements, while another may be looking to find their own additional services and utilities while keeping their rent as low as possible.  Commercial real estate leases will also generally require agreements regarding who pays for the improvements to the building and what kind of work is allowed.  This is especially important if you want to maintain a certain look and style to the entire building.  One tenant allowed to create an eyesore can significantly hinder the long-term profitability of your commercial property and  drive off other tenants.

Our firm can also review any lease agreements brought by a potential tenant.  We can advise on potential exposure to unexpected costs or legal obligations.  We can also work with the tenant’s representation to find an acceptable agreement for both parties so you get the tenant without any unnecessary risks.

Tenant Lock-Out for Commercial Real Estate in Arizona

A commercial real estate landlord in Arizona does generally have the right to lock out a tenant who has not paid the rent.  You do want to have clear expectations and language in the contract about the process of notification and the grace period the tenant has for any past due amount.  This section of the lease agreement should also clearly protect the landlord from any liability for damages to the tenant that result from being unable to access the business during this time.

Our firm will work to avoid an eviction lawsuit at all costs while attempting to collect any past due amounts.  Generally, it is best to work with the tenant to try to solve the dispute without the need for a lawsuit.  However, we are prepared to represent  you through to a verdict should an eviction lawsuit be necessary.

MacQueen & Gottlieb have significant experience with protecting commercial real estate in Arizona.  Our firm provides a host of services to commercial real estate landlords in Arizona, including due diligence, commercial lease agreements, tenant eviction and more.  Contact us today to schedule an initial consultation or make an appointment online.

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