Renting an office space in New York is expensive, and finding the right spot where you can set up shop is difficult. So when you are getting ready to look for office space here in New York, it’s vital that you know how to negotiate with your future landlord. Dealing with landlords can be very different from treating patients, so even though you’re a licensed medical professional, you may need a different set of skills for the former. That’s why you might find the following tips helpful when looking for an office space for your clinic or private practice.
1) Length of your lease
While your negotiations will most likely be about the cost of the rent, you shouldn’t forget to discuss the length of your lease as well. How long do you plan on operating? Five years? Ten years? You can try to ask for a lower lease if you plan on staying longer. The lease term might be too long or too short for your needs, in which case you may not benefit much from it. That’s why you should ask the landlord if he or she is willing to change the length of the lease to suit you. The length of the lease will depend on the number of people you expect to treat while you’re there, which in turn will depend on the location of the office space you’re planning to rent. You have to be conscious of the site as you might end up wasting money on a lease that’s too long or too short. You should also make sure it won’t expire too soon as negotiating renewal agreements will take time and leave you susceptible to frequent increases in rent.
2) Boost your leverage by knowing more and starting early
When you’re looking for an office space for your clinic, you have to arm yourself with facts that you can use when you’re negotiating with a prospective landlord. Do research on the average rental costs in the area where you plan to set up shop, whether it’s Queens, Manhattan, or the Bronx. You need to put together a list of prospects so you can compare and contrast them. You need to be aware that looking for an office space won’t be easy. It’s a process that can take up a lot of your time, and negotiating with a prospective landlord will only add to that length.
That’s why you shouldn’t wait for your current lease to expire before you go looking for a new office space. Ideally, it’s best to start looking at least a year before you move out of your old place or before you plan to open. If you’re not in a rush, you can take your time when negotiating with a prospective landlord, and you won’t end up settling for unfavorable lease terms.
Starting your search process early will also ensure that you will have time to mull over your choices. With more information and time on your hands, you can negotiate a better deal for your clinic space even in a city like New York, where real estate can be quite expensive.
3) Include emergency clauses in your lease agreement
Emergency clauses are intended to protect you from should any untoward incidents occur. Such incidents are the kind that will affect your ability to use the space, which could include economic crises. For example, you might be forced to leave your lease early, but the landlord might still charge you rent for the remaining months in your lease agreement. You shouldn’t have to pay for a space that you’re no longer using. Therefore, you should see about including an emergency clause that says you won’t need to pay rent when these situations arise.
4) Seek the help of a real estate lawyer
Before you even start negotiating a lease, you need to hire a consultant who specializes in real estate law and lease contracts. This consultant will represent you in negotiations, provide you with updates, and explain the details of a draft agreement to you before you sign it. You are still practicing medicine, and you might not have the skill or time to scrutinize an agreement and understand the implications of each provision that the landlord will put in there. A real estate consultant can do these essential tasks for you and keep you informed on the progress of the negotiations.
If you’re having trouble looking for space
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