As a commercial real estate developer, ensuring that the terms of a lease agreement are kept can be one of the most critical aspects of success. However, there may come a time in your business when you face an incoming lawsuit from one or more tenants alleging they suffered financial losses due to a breach of contract with regard to their lease agreement.
Knowing how best to respond is critical so your business operations, finances and reputation are not negatively impacted.
Understand the Basics of Breach of Lease
A breach of lease occurs when either the tenant or landlord violates the terms and conditions of the lease agreement. For a tenant, this can include failure to pay rent, damaging the property, or violating any other provisions outlined in the lease. If you’re a developer, some examples may be failing to make necessary repairs or maintenance on the property as agreed upon in the lease. Or not providing certain amenities or services as promised in the lease agreement, such as parking spaces or security measures.
Reaching an amicable solution is always the preferred outcome and can be in your best interests. If your tenant has decided to file a breach of lease suit, it is worth considering negotiating with them to find mutual ground. By mutually coming to terms on lowered rent or other considerations, it might be possible for the situation to be resolved without further litigation.
But, if your tenant decides to take legal action against you for breach of lease, it’s important to be prepared. Make sure you have all the essential paperwork and evidence together. Compile pictures, emails, memos, contracts, and rental history; anything that will strengthen your position in court should be collected and organized.
Breaches of leases can be a difficult and complex situation for landlords. Having someone who can help you prepare for any legal proceedings is essential.