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barristerinky
barristerinky, Attorney
Category: Landlord-Tenant
Satisfied Customers: 36564
Experience:  Attorney over 16 years, landlord 26 years
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We had a commercial lease through May of 2016. The space has

Customer Question

We had a commercial lease through May of 2016. The space has been vacant since June of 2014 because we moved into a larger mental outpatient facility. The landlord threatened to take us to court if we did not continue paying rent. we continued to pay rent with hopes of subleasing or eventual moving a new program into the office space. We were going to move a group in over the holiday but to our surprise the landlord had done construction on our space and he gave 50% of our space to another doctor's office expansion. Not only that, when I looked at the electric bill our electric jumped in june of this year and, as it turns out, we paid for the electric during the construction and the day to day usage of the other doctors office since June of 2016. what are my options?
thank you
Submitted: 1 year ago.
Category: Landlord-Tenant
Expert:  barristerinky replied 1 year ago.

Hello and welcome! My name is ***** ***** I will try my level best to help with your situation or get you to someone who can.

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At this point, you would have grounds to sue him for breach of contract for the loss of use of the amount of square footage that was taken. So you would be entitled to a retroactive reduction of 50% of the rent from the time of the loss up to now, then to a reduction in rent from this point forward until the end of the lease. You can also sue him for the increased usage for electrical service as he had no right to use "your" electricity to do his project.

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Although a commercial landlord has no legal duty to mitigate his damages in the event of a breach, he also can't take away space from you while continuing to charge you full rent, in effect "double dipping" by being paid twice for the same area.

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As an aside, in addition to being an attorney, I have also been a landlord for over 26 years...

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thanks

Barrister

Customer: replied 1 year ago.
thank you .. what about the lost revenue we are going to experience because we won't be able to open more available space at our new office for additional client therapy billing? can I go after him for lost revenue? this is really putting us in a bind and the reduced office space is completely unusable because it has a waiting room but no office space.
Expert:  barristerinky replied 1 year ago.

Lost revenue is always questionable because you can't really prove that if you had the space, you would have earned $XXX a day or $YYY a day or $ZZZZ a day.. It is just too speculative and judge's won't award it. It is possible that even if you had the entire space, it would still sit empty if business was bad. So lost revenue...you can ask, but I wouldn't expect it.

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However, you could argue that the reduction in space has so damaged your use as to make it valueless for you and therefore you should be let out of the lease retroactively from June on and receive a refund of any rent paid from that point on in addition to any electrical usage..

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thanks

Barrister

Customer: replied 1 year ago.
thanks .. happy holidays
Expert:  barristerinky replied 1 year ago.

You are very welcome. Glad to help any time..

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All the best to you and yours..

Barrister

Customer: replied 1 year ago.
Hi Barrister ... happy new year. our owner had a meeting with the landlord and he wishes that we respond with an "I agree to content of discussion" associated with the below email. should I be concerned with any of the wording?Terry,
Before my attorney drafts a settlement agreement, will you confirm that the email below accurately summarizes our verbal agreement?TomOn Jan 8, 2016, at 11:37 AM, Thomas W. Zaucha wrote:Terry,
The intent of this email is to summarize our agreement of January 8, 2016 to settle our differences relative to the lease of Unit 109 of the 119 Professional Center.
1) Walter Stanley Realty (WSR) will reimburse Family Psychological Associates, LTD (FPA) rent from June 1, 2015 thru December 31, 2015 at the rate of
$2,082.72/month or a total of $14,579.04, of which, $5,526.00 was paid on December 22, 2015.
2) The balance due at the signing of a settlement agreement from WSR to FPA is $9,053.04.
3) In addition, WRS will reimburse FPA for utilities paid for the months of June thru December 2015 which FPS will invoice WSR.
4) The Lease and the First Amendment and Extension of the Lease dated June 1, 2011shall terminate on December 31, 2015.
5) Both WSR and FPA will hold each other harmless for actions/inactions relating to the lease.
6) WSR will prepare a settlement agreement relating to the lease and the terms listed in this email.Thomas W. Zaucha, President
Impulse Development Corp
9 North Seventh Street
Indiana, PA 15701
(###) ###-####office(###) ###-####fax(###) ###-####mobile
***@******.***Exclusive Manager Walter Stanley RealtyThomas W. Zaucha, President
Impulse Development Corp
9 North Seventh Street
Indiana, PA 15701
(###) ###-####office(###) ###-####fax(###) ###-####mobile
***@******.***Exclusive Manager Walter Stanley Realty
Expert:  barristerinky replied 1 year ago.

I don't see any "tricks" or questionable language in the proposed agreement, but I can't comment on the numbers as that is something you would have to do the math on to make sure they jive..

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thanks

Barrister

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