My HMO Journey: No rest for the wicked as we approach...
Signing up with a well-known franchiser usually makes it fairly easy to secure a commercial lease. The reputation of the brand provides a boost to your opportunities. However, ending a lease is a little more difficult. Handling the process the right way will limit the repercussions and costs associated with the process. If you are already losing money, ending the lease may be your only option.
1. Open a line of communication with your property manager or landlord. If the property is valuable, they may be amenable to simply taking back the property and ending the lease so a new tenant can quickly move in. There's no big fuss over a business ending sale or empty space for weeks and months. To make this technique successful, you may need to agree to leave certain upgrades or equipment to sweeten the deal.
2. Offer a replacement from your own franchise team to help your landlord enjoy a smooth transition. Contacting the franchiser is usually the best way to find qualified franchisees that can take over for you. The new tenant won't need to renovate the space very much to use it, reducing the closure during transition.
3. Use the right terminology. The term, "breaking the lease" isn't favorable for your cause, so don't use it to describe your plans. Use the term, "terminating the lease" instead. Breaking the lease is a legal violation, but you have rights to terminate an agreement that isn't working for your best interests anymore. Using the termination term in your formal communications will protect you in the case of a court hearing.
4. Consider moving within the properties of the same landlord. If you simply can't support the leasing costs of a large facility, ask your landlord if you could find a smaller space within their portfolio. Transferring your lease is usually much easier than terminating it outright. Many companies can find a more affordable space within the same property, making it easy to redirect traffic with minimal advertising.
Take the time to consider the challenges of each rental space before signing a lease. If your franchiser provides references for recommended properties, don't depend on their claims for your success. Complete basic investigations of the costs and benefits of each option before making your choice.