All Resources

How to Negotiate Your School’s Lease

Mary Dillon

March 1, 2024

How To Negotiate Your Lease 3

Leasing a facility is a significant decision for any school, with far-reaching implications for its financial stability, operational efficiency, and long-term growth prospects. The terms negotiated in a lease agreement can shape the school’s ability to fulfill its mission, accommodate its students, and adapt to changing needs over time. That’s why it’s essential for school leaders to approach lease negotiations with diligence, foresight, and a clear understanding of their objectives.

Here’s what to keep in mind.

1. Understand Lease Terms and Responsibilities

It’s essential to gain a thorough understanding of the terms and responsibilities outlined in your agreement. From rent details to property conditions and tenant rights, ensure that every aspect of the lease is clearly defined and aligned with your school’s needs and objectives.

How To Negotiate Your Lease 2

2. Consider the Total Cost

When evaluating lease agreements, it’s essential to look beyond the surface-level costs and consider the total cost of occupancy over the lease term. Be sure to factor in expenses such as property taxes, insurance, and maintenance costs. This will help you make informed decisions and avoid unexpected financial burdens down the road.

3. Negotiate Favorable Terms

Negotiating favorable lease terms requires a combination of preparation, communication, and negotiation skills. During negotiations, proactively identify your needs and advocate for your school’s interests. Whether it’s seeking lower rent rates, flexible lease terms, or additional tenant benefits, be assertive yet collaborative in your approach to securing favorable terms.

4. Address Legal and Regulatory Compliance

Lease agreements often involve complex legal and regulatory considerations that require careful attention and expertise. Consult legal professionals to ensure your lease agreement complies with all relevant laws and regulations.

How To Negotiate Your Lease

5. Plan for Future Growth and Expansion

Lease negotiations offer an opportunity for schools to plan for future growth and expansion. Negotiate lease terms that accommodate your school’s evolving needs and aspirations—whether it’s securing options for lease renewal, expansion rights, or early termination clauses, anticipate future scenarios and negotiate terms that provide the ability to grow and expand.

Lease negotiations are a critical aspect of school facility management. With careful planning, effective communication, and strategic negotiation tactics, schools can secure lease agreements that support their mission and vision for the future.

About the Author
With her wealth of experience and expertise in real estate, Mary is dedicated to providing exceptional service and value to schools as Senior Portfolio Manager at Grow Schools. Mary has followed in her father’s footsteps and built her entire career in the field of real estate—she embarked on this path after completing her bachelor’s degree in Accounting and Finance (Commerce) at the University College Dublin, specializing in development and asset services.
Want to share?