“Tell them that if they don’t sign by noon tomorrow, I’m going to lease the space to someone else!” “If you don’t agree to my insurance language, this deal is dead.” “We have four other people who badly want this space, and each will pay more than what’s in our deal.”
The specter of each possibility is the threat. It doesn’t matter how probable it is that, late in a deal, one party or the other will “walk” if the deal is signed a week from now rather than “now.”
Yes, it’s possible that there are other prospective tenants lurking around the property and it is possible that other landlords are tossing great offers at your prospective tenant.
But, these things are true so rarely, that no one believes these threats. Yet, landlords and tenants keep trying.
Granted that under the right circumstances and with confirming facts to support the urgency of the plea, such threats should be taken seriously. After all, in a very, very small, yet disturbing number of cases, landlords and tenants walk from a late-stage deal to take another, more attractive one. That really doesn’t happen much. More often, a tenant is negotiating for a space that has been “sucking wind” and the likelihood that four prospects have shown up all at once after 18 months is quite low. It could happen, but so could two planes crash mid-air. Yet, brokers and landlords drag that old song out far too often. And, we’re not going to tag just brokers and landlords with that charge; tenants try to sing that song as well. [Read more…]