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If you are a gym owner, do us a favor and go pull out your commercial lease. Flip to the section (probably very early in the lease) that describes the leased premises. Now, see what it says for square footage. Does your lease say, ”Approximately XXXXX square feet?” Have you ever measured your space to see how close the actual square footage is to what it says in the lease? You can still do this even if your lease reports the actual square footage of your space.

Sometimes, those two numbers can vary drastically. We’ve seen instances where the square footage reported in the lease, and the square footage of the actual space, can vary up to twenty-five (25%) percent. Keep in mind, that’s not 25% in favor of you, the tenant. That’s 25% less square footage than you think you are leasing.

If you are a new gym owner, and you haven’t signed your commercial lease yet, this is an important lesson to learn. This is one of those lessons you don’t know until it is too late. So, let our experience help you. Go measure your commercial space. It doesn’t have to be exact. Just pull out a tape measure, measure the length, measure the width, and multiply the two numbers. Do this, BEFORE you sign the lease.

If you have a case where the square footage of the space is significantly less than what is approximated in the lease, you need to ask for an adjustment in what is reported in the lease. Here’s why. The landlord is going to charge you for the square footage approximated in the written lease. Assume for a moment that your lease says your commercial space is 1200 square feet (approximately or actually). However, when you measure, you only come up with only 800 square feet. The landlord is still going to charge you base rent assuming 1200 square feet. Therefore, you are paying 25% more than you should be. We don’t know about you, but we certainly don’t want to be paying more than we need to for our commercial space each month.

Never assume your lease is correct. We don’t mean to sound like we don’t trust anyone. However, a little second guessing can save you THOUSANDS of dollars over the lifespan of a lease.

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