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Ask Alex Esquire Your Own Question
Alex Esquire
Alex Esquire, Attorney at Law
Category: Real Estate Law
Satisfied Customers: 16720
Experience:  Experienced Licensed Attorney / Real Estate Law Mentor
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I have just signed a term lease space with a landlord who

Customer Question

I have just signed a long term lease for a space with a landlord who has expressed a desire to bid as the General Contractor for the construction we need done. While we were drawing plans and submitting them to landlord, the landlord took the liberty - without our authorization - to do some of the demolition. Now he had given us an exorbitant estimate for the GC work and has stated that if we don't use him, he will make things extremely difficult for us as he has done "enormous" amounts of work already. Considering we never authorized his previous work, and our lease states that he cannot do anything "unreasonable" to hold up approvals needed for our construction, what recourse do we have?
Submitted: 1 year ago.
Category: Real Estate Law
Expert:  Alex Esquire replied 1 year ago.

Hello. My name is***** will be happy to answer your question.
I am sorry to hear about this unfortunate situation.

I am not permitted to tell what to do in their specific situation or list all of the legal rights that might potential apply in any specific situation, as such legal advice can only be provided by your local attorney, upon review of your entire case.

I can however, provide you with a general answer, if you have a legal question for me?

Thank you.

Customer: replied 1 year ago.
My legal question - is
does a real estate contractor have legal ground for demanding collection for unauthorized construction?
Expert:  Alex Esquire replied 1 year ago.

Thank you for your follow up.

Did the landlord's company bill the tenant for any demolition that was done without tenant's authorization?

Customer: replied 1 year ago.
Not yet. He put it in the "Bid" that he just delivered via email.
Expert:  Alex Esquire replied 1 year ago.

Thank you for your follow up.

Generally, in a similar situation, the landlord's bid would not have any priority / preference over any other GC bids and if the landlord tries to somehow block or delay any construction work, if the tenant chooses a different contractor, then the tenant would generally be able to pursue legal action based on the breach of the lease terms, since the lease terms specifically state that the landlord cannot so anything to unreasonably hold up / delay approvals required for tenant's construction.

Generally, given the situation, it might be a good idea to get an experienced local business law attorney on board and to have this attorney send a stern notice to the landlord advising him of the tenant's position and the fact that legal action would be pursued, shall landlord fail to comply with the terms of the commercial lease or in some other way block or delay any approvals required for the future construction. This way the situation / issue can be documented and the landlord can be put on notice that his attempts to pressure the tenant to accept his exorbitant bid would not be tolerated and will warrant proper legal action if the landlord doesn't cease such attempts.

I wish you the best of luck!