Get the Deal You Made with Your Landlord in Writing

by Barbara Sprenger, founder and CEO of Deskworks

Yes, we’re coming down the home stretch of lockdowns, even if we don’t know how long the stretch is going to be.

If you’re running a coworking space or a flexible office center, you may have made a deferred rent arrangement with your landlord during the time that the future we’re now living in was totally unknown.

But now, you need to be sure you have something in writing. You’re probably feeling the weight of an open ended, perhaps verbal, agreement. Can you face the $50K, $100K or $200K that might be hanging over your head at the end of the pandemic? Are you filled with dread that you’re expected to pay that off out of future profits, and you can’t see how long it’s going to take to get to any profits?

Landlords want you to stay in business. It’s expensive for them to market a space, wait for a potential lessee — probably one that’s not as good as you — and pay commissions and another round of tenant improvement allowances. They want to make it work as much as you do, and they know you might well just throw in the towel after everything you’ve gone through.

So talk with your landlord now. Email them and set up a meeting or a chat. Be sure to listen and understand their needs, as well. You have probably used your stimulus funds to just stay alive by this point. Make that clear.

You should be able to negotiate starting from a clean slate once a majority of people are vaccinated and people are coming back into your center. Worst case, negotiate to pay a manageable amount each month over a longer period, with some percentage of deferred rents forgiven. Certainly, your management software should allow you to give them a link to see the revenue you’re generating in real time, so you’re establishing an environment of trust. Think really clearly about what you can realistically pay back and still want to do your job.

And remember, we truly are all in this together.

Deskworks can help you automate your space and prepare for the coming workspace return. Contact us to learn more and schedule a free demo.

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