As a new business owner, you will likely be entering into a lease agreement, unless you decide to operate from home. In British Columbia, a business lease varies greatly from a residential lease. Many protections under the Residential Tenancy Act do not apply to commercial leases. For example, commercial leases are referred to as “triple net” leases, as the base rent does not include any of the expenses incurred in operating the property. The tenant is charged for their share of property taxes, insurance, utilities, and maintenance.
In general, the process of leasing a property includes negotiating a lease, the offer to lease, the lease agreement, and registering the lease. Each stage is complex and requires a great deal of preparation. If this is your first time negotiating a commercial lease, you may want to seek assistance from a commercial real estate agent, a lease consultant, or a lawyer to help ensure that the process goes smoothly.