Have you ever wondered why operating expenses vary from property to property? Energy consumption, service levels and service contracts can vary greatly so it is advisable to secure the details prior to lease execution.
Several recent office lease transactions Paramount has been involved in highlight the need for a close review of a property’s operating budget. Some “full service” leases may include daily cleaning, vacuuming, replacing light bulbs and cleaning your breakroom. And then others may not include these services at all or the services may be on a more limited basis. While most Property owners reserve the right to change rules and regulations and janitorial specs, it is a good practice for your representative to take the time to request the budget and janitorial specifications. Once you have the detailed information you will be better able to compare properties. After settling on your most desirable property, a close review of the associated lease language may uncover conflicts or missing details that might surprise you during your term. As an example, say your employees prefer to eat lunch in your office suite, this practice probably makes it imperative that janitorial specifications would include daily trash service. No one wants to smell that reheated salmon the first time let alone the rest of the week!
Knowing the service level upfront will allow you the opportunity to verify the details are incorporated into the final lease. After all, operating expenses and real estate taxes can be 50% or more of your overall rent and you should only be paying for services you receive.