Recently we heard from a client who took our Belonging Barometer (B2) and it confirmed that her company’s current office set up is not working – or frankly, they were no longer where they “belong.”  Our B2 report affirmed that her company was not leaning into critical components of an office space that indeed would have a lasting impact on recruitment and retention.

As motivated as she was to make necessary changes, she felt defeated. Why? As she put it, “well, this is all spot on and things we need to change, but the reality is that I’m in a lease for another few years and can’t do a thing about it.”

Really? Is that true?

At Monarch, by no means are we saying that anyone should ignore their obligations in a contractual arrangement. However, we have found that these agreements aren’t always written in stone as much as some may think. 

The key is to avoid ever feeling trapped as your business changes throughout a lease. For every client we work with – as excited as they are to enter a new space, they rarely imagine outgrowing it or needing to downsize. We know, however, that things can change and that’s why we always push to include expansion, contraction, and termination options when possible. Hopefully the lease term is perfect for what a client needs and nothing needs to change for its duration. That said, should a company no longer “belong” in a space, we keep the doors open so that change might be possible throughout the lease versus just at the end of it.

There are a lot of situations where tenants didn’t include expansion, contraction, or termination options in their lease. Just like our client who took B2 and reached out feeling defeated, these same people would like a change but feel there is no footing with the Landlord to do so. 

If you are not where you belong and feel trapped in a lease without contractual options, we still believe you can bring your landlord to the table. Our B2 can help you figure out what you need, but it is critical to spend time understanding what the landlord might want or need in exchange. 

For example, if they have plans to sell the building, they will likely be focused on getting a higher rate. If they are not selling, they may be focused less on securing a higher rate and more on extending your lease term. In other words, you might not be the only party at the table whose needs have changed. 

Many of our clients have been able to bring the landlord to the table midterm and revise their lease with a “blend and extend” approach. They were able to achieve midterm needs and concessions provided they were willing to extend the lease and re-commit to the building.

And again, when it comes to your lease, you may not be trapped either. The goal is not to avoid any responsibility… it’s to figure out where you belong and then do what it takes to get there.

So why not start? Take our Belonging Barometer today.

Until next time,

Brian + Ben
Monarch CRE


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