Office Leasing Process Overview

Leasing an office in Manhattan can be overwhelming, but by working with an experienced, knowledgeable and reliable agent that prepares you for what to expect, it facilitates the process.

You can also access the dropdown menu above for explanations or solutions to common problems encountered when renting an office in New York.

Here is a quick summary of the commercial leasing process:
STEP 1: Identifying Your Needs
This includes determining how many square feet you need, your desired layout, lease term (standard is usually 3-5 or 5-10 years), and budget along with cosmetic factors like flooring, ceiling height, and natural light.
STEP 2: Gathering/Preparing Financial Information
Before being accepted by a landlord, the landlord will need to review your company financial information. If you have it together before you find your space, it will make it easier to secure the space.
STEP 3: Finding Your Space
Some people know what they want immediately and others are more comfortable seeing enough spaces to get an understanding of the market first. As a potential renter, you can work independently or use a broker. Since commissions in commercial real estate are paid by landlords, using a broker usually will not cost you anything.
STEP 4: Submitting an Offer
Regardless of how long it takes you to find your space, it’s critical not to hesitate once you do. Since commercial space is in high demand in New York, your window of opportunity is usually not very big. Some spaces sit on the market for months or even years, but the most desirable ones are often leased within a few days.
If you have already prepared your financial information, you will have saved crucial time and gained an advantage over another interested tenant that has not.
STEP 5: Negotiating Terms & Getting a Lease
If your initial offer is not accepted, the landlord will usually send you a counteroffer and you can begin negotiating the terms such as rental rate, free rent, landlord work, and length of lease. Once the terms have been agreed upon, the landlord will send you a lease.
STEP 6: Signing A Lease

Once you receive a lease, you can review it yourself or hire an attorney to review it. If you have questions you can either ask the landlord’s representative, your attorney, or your broker. You can ask the landlord to make changes to some of the lease items, but they will not revisit any of the terms already discussed during negotiations. Typically landlords will give a tenant a few days to a week to review a lease before they expect the tenant’s first round of comments or a returned signed with the deposit and first month’s rent checks. Exchanging legal comments can take a couple days or up to a couple months depending on the complexity of the deal.

As commercial real estate brokers, our goal is to help find you the right office for the right price. We believe that the more straightforward you are with your clients, the better results you can achieve together. At living, we take pictures of almost any space we see so we can share them with our clients before showing the spaces. This allows us to narrow down which spaces you want to see more accurately and also saves a lot of time for our clients and ourselves. We are also committed to responding very quickly to our clients anytime day or night.

We have access to every commercial space in New York City and our information is updated daily so we always know everything that is available.