As a store owner, there will come a point when you have to negotiate with your landlord. Often it’s when it’s time to renew your lease, but sometimes circumstances calls for a different negotiation. Like when you just can’t make rent.
Early on during the pandemic many store owners around the world faced having to shut down their business. It posed a real dilemma about how to afford to keep paying rent.
At the time, it wasn’t feasible for store owners to pay full rent during the crisis while their store was closed. They simply couldn’t afford to.
There was so much going on and so much of it was outside of your control. It was an extreme situation for so many business owners. But so many store owners face difficulties paying their rent for all sorts of reasons.
Whether you’re dealing with a global crisis, or just a crisis of your life or business – Rent shouldn’t be outside your control.
Watch this video to learn the 5 steps to effectively negotiating with your landlord. You have MUCH more control than you think.
5 Steps to Negotiate with Your Landlord
- First, acknowledge that you’re in a position where you can’t afford to pay full rent. This could be because of a situation outside of your control as during the pandemic – or a temporary crisis in your life or business. Or it could simply be because traffic and/or sales are down and you just can’t make rent.
- Make sure you’re negotiating with the decision maker – ideally the landlord themselves, not a manager. Keep reaching out until you connect, every day if necessary! Once you connect, explain why you are unable to pay full rent right now, AND then share all the things you’re currently doing to grow your business or solve the situation. The fact that you’re being proactive about it will work in your favor!
- Ask your landlord for an abatement – not a deferral. This means that your rent is cancelled, not postponed until later. Start by asking for 100% abatement – this is just the start of the negotiations and you don’t know for sure what they’ll agree to.
- Expect to get a no. Acknowledge their position and reinforce your position that you simply can’t pay your rent right now.
- Stay in communication! It’s not uncommon that you’ll keep getting a no over and over again, but by keeping the line of communication open you’ll eventually get a counter offer. Show your landlord that you are open and honest about your situation and you’re trying to find a solution that works for you both.
Ideally you’ll want to pay a percentage of your sales until you are through your crisis, so keep negotiating for that, and be prepared to be honest about reporting your sales. Your landlord will see your integrity through this negotiation process and you might be surprised with how they react!
Be the #CEO of your business.
Click here for the email template our clients used during the pandemic. Just edit it to suit your situation and start the conversation with your landlord.
Stay Safe. Love Hard. Shine Bright.
P.S. Through any type of crisis (including a sudden drop in traffic or sales) it’s more important than ever to have solid foundations in place. Inside our Sales Breakthrough System I show you exactly how to fix the financial health of your store, your inventory levels, your staff performance and your marketing strategy, so you can consistently grow your sales and your paycheck. This system is available in all levels of our programs, including our RETAILMavens Coaching program which you can join now for just $99/month.