The negotiation of an office lease is one of the most important parts of starting up a practice, growing a practice, relocating a practice, or selling a practice. A bad lease can kill a deal to sell your practice and many times you don’t know it until it is too late to do anything about it. Leases are generally for long periods of time, are very difficult if not impossible to get out of without significant penalty and are one of your practice’s largest expenses. No two proposed draft leases are alike and just about every lease term is negotiable. Form leases that landlords and office equipment professionals use are specifically drafted with very favorable lease terms for the lessor, not the leasee (which is you!). Favorable terms for you include free rent periods, assignment provisions, relocation, exclusivity and permitted use clauses. Who is responsible for maintenance, parking fees and utility costs. Will you have the first right of refusal at the time of the lease renewal? An office is a part of your brand that should be preserved, especially if you are planning to sell your practice. What you don’t know about the many possibilities and pitfalls of lease terms can hurt you and the future of your practice. It is never advisable to enter into a lease without the assistance of an experienced corporate attorney.