When it comes to commercial real estate, there is plenty to know. The purchase and sale of commercial real estate brings up plenty of legal issues, including those that can affect title.
For example, if you are selling commercial property, you need to understand your legal obligation to disclose material defects about the property. If, on the other hand, you are buying commercial property, you need to be aware of your duty to inspect the property for obvious (not latent) defects.
Environmental regulations and zoning are also issues that affect commercial purchases, sales and leases alike.
Commercial tenants need to understand that they are not afforded the same protections that residential tenants are. There are no caps on security deposits for commercial leases, and it is far more difficult to break a commercial lease than a residential lease. Also, commercial tenants must clearly understand their obligations when it comes to making changes or improvements to a space as well as the rules regarding fixtures when it comes time to leave.
All in all, commercial leases can be pretty complicated, and it is important that you understand all the terms of the lease before you sign one.
Before you sign a commercial lease, it is also important that you understand your obligations under the federal Americans With Disabilities Act (“ADA”).
Americans With Disabilities Act
The federal American With Disability Act (ADA) was signed into law in 1990. While perhaps best known for making it illegal for employers, including private, state and local government, and labor organizations, to discriminate against qualified individuals with disabilities in the workplace, the ADA also applies to commercial businesses.
The ADA requires all businesses that are open to the public or that employ more than fifteen people to make the premises accessible to the disabled. It will come as no surprise that quite often making the necessary ADA accessibility changes to a commercial space can be costly. It is therefore important for commercial tenants to know what their obligations are under the law as well as who (the landlord or you) is going to be responsible for paying for these changes.
Compliance with the ADA is mandatory. So it is important that you consider this before you sign your commercial lease.
Georgia Real Estate Law
We are experienced real estate attorneys in Georgia. We handle all aspects of real estate including commercial leases. We have offices in Cumming, Georgia, and we serve Atlanta and a number of the surrounding counties including: Clayton County, Cobb County, Dekalb County, Douglas County, Fulton County, and Paulding County, among others. You can contact us here or call us at 770-888-7707 to schedule your free phone consultation.