Step 4

Obtain professional advice

Lease agreements can be complex and difficult to understand. It is strongly recommended that you obtain legal and commercial advice before making a commitment to lease commercial premises, especially before you:

  • sign an offer to lease, agreement to lease, lease or any other lease related document;
  • pay any deposit or other monies;
  • enter into possession of the premises; or
  • make any verbal agreements.

A lease and its clauses could appear simple, standard and acceptable on the surface but in many instances this may not be the case. Be aware that many legal terms are used to convey specific concepts that may vary from their common meaning.

Sometimes business owners resist incurring the expense of professional advice, but your business and its capacity to generate profit is a valuable asset and should be protected.

Consider that the cost of professional advice may be recouped many times over if it assists you to secure a lease that:

  • allows you to trade profitably;
  • better suits your business; and
  • reduces the likelihood of costly disputes in the future.

Advice from a lawyer with commercial tenancy expertise can help you to understand your legal and financial obligations under the lease, or to negotiate more favourable terms. See Hiring a Lawyer  for more information.

Commercial advice from your accountant or business advisor can help you assess whether your business can meet the expense of the rent and other occupancy costs of the premises over the term of the lease.

In addition to legal and commercial advice, you should also seek business and property advice to ensure the lease is based on sound business and property principles.

The commercial tenancy specialist advisors at the Small Business Development Corporation (SBDC) provide small businesses with free guidance and information on the Act and all aspects of leasing commercial premises.

We have a range of fact sheets and booklets to download so you can be fully informed about the Commercial Tenancy (Retail Shops) Agreements Act 1985 which regulates retail shop leases in Western Australia.

What's next…

Related Information

Business Brief
Leasing Commercial Property

Business Guide
Commercial Leases Main Issues

Download free eBooks on leasing

The free eBook guides include:

  • Leasing business premises - a commercial and practical guide
  • Common Questions about the Commercial Tenancy Act booklets
  • Fact sheets for retail shop laws

Contact a specialist commercial tenancy adviser on 13 12 49.