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What to Look For in a Retail Lease

Retail Lease pic
Retail Lease
Image: updevelopment.com

Scott Fish is the principal of UP Development, a retail real estate developer operating primarily in the southeastern United States. In his leadership role with the developer, Scott Fish has managed numerous retail development and workout projects for national retailers such as Walmart and Home Depot.

When it comes to choosing a retail lease, it is important for developers to stay aware of the factors directly influencing their future developments. Here are three key features to consider in retail properties.

Research zoning. While standard retail zoning may be sufficient for most developers, businesses planning to sell hunting equipment or liquor may require special zoning permits. By conducting careful research and speaking directly with zoning authorities, developers can avoid unpleasant surprises down the road.

Determine monthly payments. Costs such as basic rent and real estate taxes should be outlined clearly in a retail lease. Developers should also be on the lookout for utilities and common area maintenance (CAM), which may vary widely based on the type of building in question.

Assess the surrounding area. Most retail businesses thrive in high-traffic areas, which naturally bring customers to their doors. High-traffic areas typically include increased rent and utilities costs, requiring developers to employ careful cost-benefit analysis.

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