Utilizing Safeguards in Commercial Real Estate Contracts: Contingencies

Commercial real estate transactions are complex and involve substantial investments. Whether you are a buyer or a seller, entering into a commercial real estate contract can be a high-stakes endeavor. In such transactions, unforeseen challenges and risks can emerge at any stage of the deal, making it essential to have safeguards in place. Contingencies are one such safeguard that provides a safety net in commercial real estate contracts.

What Are Contingencies?

Contingencies are clauses or conditions in a real estate contract that allow either party to back out of the deal or renegotiate certain terms if specific conditions are not met. These conditions can cover a wide range of issues and are designed to protect both buyers and sellers from unexpected events that could jeopardize the transaction.

Common Contingencies in Commercial Real Estate Contracts

Financing: In most cases, securing financing is a fundamental component of commercial real estate deals. However, numerous factors, such as changes in banking policies or government regulations, can lead to unforeseen delays. Additionally, a buyer might fail to secure financing or obtain an acceptable interest rate. Consequently, a financing contingency provides a safeguard, permitting either party to withdraw from the agreement should the financing become unattainable.

Title: Title-related issues, such as unidentified liens, undisclosed easements, unresolved heirship matters, or other discrepancies, can jeopardize the viability of any real estate transaction. A title contingency empowers the buyer to raise objections to unfavorable title conditions. Titles, in essence, delineate property ownership, deed restrictions, liens, and easements, which may precipitate concerns during the transaction.

Survey: Conducting a comprehensive survey can unveil essential information regarding utility accessibility, public road access, easement locations, and their potential impact on the property. Furthermore, surveys can elucidate the accurate size of the lot and its boundaries, facilitating informed decision-making.

Inspection: A formal inspection serves as a critical element in identifying potential issues that require immediate rectification or that can be subject to negotiation regarding the purchase price. It can also reveal deal-breaking concerns that need addressing.

Additional Contingencies for Consideration

Commercial real estate transactions inherently vary, and as such, the specific terms of each deal may necessitate the inclusion of additional contingencies. Contingencies are a crucial safety net in commercial real estate contracts. They protect both buyers and sellers from unforeseen challenges and risks that can arise during the course of a transaction. By including carefully crafted contingencies in a contract, parties can mitigate their exposure to financial and legal risks, ensuring a smoother and more secure real estate transaction. When entering into a commercial real estate deal, it’s essential to work with experienced professionals, including real estate agents and attorneys, to draft and negotiate contingency clauses that best suit your needs and protect your interests.