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Putting Our Client’s Interests Above All Others

top real estate lawyer nyc

At the law offices of David J. Aronstam, we specialize in all types of commercial, residential & corporate real estate law. Since 1992, we have delivered the highest quality legal services to clients from all over the country. We also have decades of experience in all areas of litigation, Trusts & Estates law, Family law, Business law, Matrimonial law and many others.

Admitted as a Barrister in South Africa in 1980, Mr. Aronstam has been practicing law in New York since 1984.  From 1984 to 1992, he was an associate at McLaughlin & Stern, a prestige boutique engaged in a general civil practice which was formed in 1896.  While at McLaughlin & Stern, he worked in all the departments of the firm and gained hands on and in depth experience in all areas of the firm’s practice which included civil litigation, real estate, securities law, corporate law, trust and estates and health care law.


In 1992, Mr. Aronstam started his own firm as a solo practitioner and have practiced without interruption since that date.  He was counsel to Mandell, Freedman & Mandell, the premier commercial leasing boutique in New York City from 1992-2000.

“As a real estate lawyer, I believe that the integrity of my law practice is based solely on putting my client’s interests above all others. I am fully responsive to all my client’s needs and requests and base my fees around what will work for the client in the long term. I believe in building solid long-term relationships, rather than doing single items of work for each client. I am working hard to change the negative image so justly earned by the legal profession in this country.”


Residential Real Estate Transactions

Commercial Real Estate Transactions

Corporate Litigation

Commercial Litigation

Real Estate Litigation

Matrimonial Litigation

Surrogate’s Court Litigation

Family Law

Trust & Estate Administration

Attorney-Client Issues

Business Law

What Should a NYC Real Estate Lawyer be Experienced in?

what-should-nyc-real-estate-attorney-be-experienced-in-01So, what should a NYC real estate lawyer be experienced in? Real estate lawyers help clients prepare documents, obtain proof of income, and negotiate contracts. Your lawyer must understand how to find and close loopholes and promote your interests throughout the entire process. David J. Aronstam has over thirty-five years of experience dealing with real estate in New York and beyond.

What is a real estate attorney?

A real estate attorney is well versed in contract law. Finding loopholes, creating assurances, and enforcing terms make up the bulk of our work.

We also help clients prepare the documentation required to obtain property. Purchasing real estate is complicated. Lenders want proof of income or wealth. In our high demand market, assurances must be made without being superseded by another buyer.

Can a lawyer help me obtain certain assurances in a real estate contract?

top-new-york-real-estate-lawyer-02Contracts should not be one-sided. The average age of a home in the United States exceeds 31 years. Electrical and plumbing components break, and infrastructure degrades over time. Once you find the perfect location, a home inspection may reveal defects that the seller should fix. However, if the property is highly desirable, this may not always be possible.

A lawyer should be able to draft a conditional contract giving the buyer first rights to a property based on specific assurances. New York allows for conditional agreements.

What goes into a contract?

Promises, assurances, and contracts form the basis of nearly every economy. Contract law started here before the country even existed. Your lawyer must know what goes into a deal and willing to spend the time and effort to promote your interests thoroughly.

Our law offices carry thirty-five years of experience in real estate to every client. We understand that each situation is unique and are ready to thoroughly prepare the documents you need to avoid a future headache.

Unique laws and bylaws in New York City

nyc-real-estate-law-expert-lawyer-03The big apple is a vibrant community. People from all over the world want to be a part of our city. A hot real estate market led to rising prices. Both the city government and the people sought to control rent and limit price increases starting in the 1970s. Old and new tenant law governs prices for multi-home dwellings.

Co-op apartments are a practically non-existent form of housing outside the city. A board of directors’ places restrictions on who purchases shares and the rules they need to follow.

Real estate lawyers in the city need to know how to navigate this environment. Contracts bring new dimensions not found in the rest of the state. We help clients understand the opportunities and issues related to housing in the city. Our team dives into the various

Beyond the purchase

Matters related to your home purchase extend beyond the final purchase. These issues range from managing defects to obtaining financing. New York requires sellers to provide a disclosure statement. Any significant defect must be known at the time of sale. Failure to reveal problems is actionable.

Once you decide to purchase a property, there is also the need to secure funding. Lenders want to know that you can pay your mortgage. They want proof of income and assets. Our team prepares every document and deals with any unforeseen circumstances.

Get in touch today for legal advice and consultation for your real estate purchase.

David J. Aronstam, Esq.
(646) 759-0400


Do I need a lawyer to Purchase a House in New York?

do-you-need-lawyer-purchase-house-new-york-01If you’ve been asking yourself recently “do I need a lawyer to purchase a house in New York?”, then continue reading. Although not required when making a home purchase, a lawyer gives buyers and sellers a leg in a home purchase. A real estate lawyer can help you achieve every item on your New York real estate closing checklist without conflict. David J. Aronstam has over thirty-five years of experience in this area of law and can help with any contract or negotiation.

Rising prices in an aging market

The average age of a home in the United States continues to climb. At 37 years in 2015, repairs are not uncommon. Constructed completed on more than half of owner-occupied buildings in the country before 1980. These homes require attention. Ducts need to be clean, roofs repaired, and interiors thoroughly inspected. The closing checklist is extensive, and your dream home may require some attention.

Meanwhile, the exploding prices grip the nation. The cost of homes exceeds the point reached before 2008. Sellers aim to achieve the highest price possible. Closings are hotly contested.

How can a lawyer help me build a house?

attorney-legal-to-build-house-new-york-02A real estate lawyer irons out the fine points of a contract, closing loopholes and providing peace of mind. It is customary for the seller’s attorney to draft the first draft of a sale. The buyer needs to ensure that the proposal is fair.

Your attorney also helps establish title to the home. As we other fields, we resolve claims and help recreate the chain of ownership. Liens and violations of ordinances create a headache for any buyer.

When the deal closes, your attorney helps review documentation such as deeds, tax returns, and mortgage documents. Failing to obtain any of these documents properly leads to complications down the road.

The role of a lawyer does not always end once the deal closes. Negotiation often produces specific guarantees. With the average of age of a home, these assurances relate to everything from duct and yard repair to plumbing and electricity. Your lawyer is crucial if a party fails to uphold their end of the bargain. We help to enforce the terms of your contract.

Understanding the lending process

mortgage-lending-for-ny-house-purchase-attorney-03Housing prices are astronomical. Lenders want to assure that they will get their money back. Unlike in the 2000s, they request extensive proof of income and even require character references. Establishing substantive proof of your ability to pay helps avoid the same issues leading to the 2008 crash.

We help our clients prepare documentation and avoid any pitfalls in the lending process. You should never give any more information than you need to any lending institution. We also help you gain an understanding of the total cost of your future purchase.

Do I need a lawyer to buy a house?

It is not necessary to use a lawyer when buying a house. However, not using a lawyer allows problems to grow uncontrollably.
We strive to ensure that each party achieves a fair agreement. Expert training and experience allow us to identify and overcome issues in the purchase process quickly. Never get caught with a bad title or in unlivable conditions.

If purchasing a house in New York, do you need a lawyer? Not by law, but you should consider hiring one. The team at the law offices of David J. Aronstam are ready to assist. Get in touch today to find out more.

David J. Aronstam, Esq.
Attorney at Law
(646) 759-0400


Condo or Coop

condo-vs-coop-nyc-attorney-lawyer-purchase-buy-01Choosing between a condo or coop in New York depends on the needs of the buyer. Coop apartments can be less expensive than condos but are tightly controlled by the board. The law offices of David J. Aronstam helps potential homeowners and renters navigate the complex market in the city.

New York City Housing Market

The market in New York City is cooling down. A drop-in population across the state has not dampened the overall market. However, after peaking in 2015, prices across the boroughs continue to decline.

Today, the average price of a condominium in Manhattan is slightly lower than $1 million. The ten to twenty percent drop over the past several years is not slowing down.

However, housing in the city is expensive. With the economy growing and unemployment low, people continue to migrate to and from the area. Supply remains incredibly tight as demand is steady.

What are the benefits of coop housing?

nyc-attorney-to-purchaes-coop-specialist-02Coop housing places control over a building in the hands of a corporation. You purchase shares in the company which grants access to a proprietary lease.

This form of ownership keeps investors and migratory tenants from receiving shares. An elected board creates restrictions and decides what happens when they are violated. Most coop housing limits the number of days an apartment can be sublet. Typically, it is possible to sublet for several days over a two-year period.

Overall, this form of housing is perfect for long-term residents. Prices are forty percent lower on average than for a condo. Some coop apartments take care of utilities and maintenance as well. However, this is not always the case.

However, you do not own the property and are subject to the rules of the corporation. You need to know the requirements for tenancy.

What are the benefits of a condominium?

top-nyc-attorney-purchase-condo-03A condominium offers complete ownership and flexibility. The only limitations are those set by the association governing such tasks as garbage collection and maintenance.

The ability to sublet your apartment with only a permit makes this form of housing attractive to investors and short-term residents. With housing prices remaining high and the typical attractiveness of New York City, you are likely to recoup or even gain more than what was paid for your condo.

Which type of housing should I choose?

Your plan for your new home is crucial to making the right decision. Short term residents with fleeting jobs or those looking to set up a rental property should purchase a condominium. Others who plan on staying may benefit from the lower cost of a coop apartment.
Coop housing also comes with a more rigorous approval process. Even after going through in-person interviews with the board and showing the required paper trail, you may be rejected. Most foreign buyers do not have enough proof to be vetted.

The down payment for a coop is normally 20 percent, double that of a condominium. Even if you put down the money for shares, the restrictions placed on ownership may exceed what you can afford.

Meanwhile, the flexibility of a condominium and lower down payment comes at a cost. Real estate is expensive in the city.

Do I need a lawyer?

Choosing between the two types of housing can be difficult. We help clients obtain the proper documentation and better understand any contract they are about to enter.

Get in touch today to better understand the housing market for Condos and Co ops in New York City.

David J. Aronstam, Esq.
85 Broad Street
28th floor
New York, New York  10004
(646) 759-0400



Points to Consider When Buying a Condo in New York City

legal-points-for-buying-condo-new-york-city-01What are some points to consider when buying a condo in New York city? Rent prices in New York City are astronomical. The average studio rents for over $3000 per month. The price of such an apartment is nearly three times as high as the mortgage on the average home in the United States.

Condos offer a more affordable alternative to renting in the city. With over 35 years of experience, David J. Aronstam stands ready to help solidify the contracts and resolve disputes in your quest for affordable living.

Are there alternatives to renting an apartment in New York City?

attorney-condo-purchase-nyc-02Apartments are expensive. This issue is not new. In fact, price controls from the 1970s targeted the skyrocketing cost of rent. In part due to this, New York City is one of the three most expensive locations in the country. The market devised several solutions to deal with prices for those seeking long-term ownership.

Condos and co-ops are the perfect solution to home ownership. While co-ops reduce costs by over forty percent, they carry strict regulations and place your shares under the control of an elected board. Condos may or may not reduce the price of living. If you are renting from a condo owner, the prices will surely be the same. However, depending on how much you are willing to pay up front, your cost of ownership can be drastically lower.

Buying a condo in New York City

At any given time, there are more condominiums on the market than co-op housing. They provide easy access for certain buyers looking for a permanent home in the city.

Condominiums in New York City are not inexpensive. The average price is nearly $800000. Still, for those with long term plans and a significant amount of capital can capitalize on potentially lower monthly rates.

What laws govern condomiums?

legal-points-buying-condo-nyc-03When buying a condo in New York city, the contract between the buyer and seller establishes price and can help guarantee the condition of the property. As a significant investment, it is necessary to cover every base. Buyers may want certain assurances and sellers want their exchange to work smoothly.

Owners and prospective owners may choose to rent their property as well. Investors are not discouraged from buying a condo as is the case with co-op housing. In this case, the state provides certain restrictions.

Condominium associations are governed by Article 9-b of the Real Property Act. Not every building is automatically considered a condominium under the Condominium Act either. A declaration and bylaws are required by state law.

Any transfer, governance, or obligation is managed by the Real Property Act and state law. Landlords must obtain insurance and offer leases for nearly one year. They must also deal with the condominium association. Rules imposed by the homeowners association are enforceable.

Contract and dispute resolution

Once a contract forms, disputes are not uncommon. Loopholes may cause an understanding to fall apart in court. New York is a four corners state. The contract is taken at face value but loopholes allow intent to take precedence.

I am an expert in resolving disputes without further damaging the relationship between parties. I help buyers, sellers, and associations reach common ground and cover every base in any property transaction.

If you are looking for a property or embroiled in a dispute, I can help. I am an expert New York City property attorney today.

David J. Aronstam
(646) 759-0400




Court Excludes Parole Evidence Where Contract is Complete, Clear, and Unambigouous. Freiberger Haber LLP. 21 Aug 2017.

IS it Worth Buying a Coop in NYC? Hauseit. 2019,

Im, Julius. 7 Important Facts About New York Landlord and Tenant Laws. Avail. 2 Apr 2018,

New York Property and Real Estate Laws. FindLaw. 2019,

New York Condo Association Rules. Griffen and Alexaner P.C. 2018, www.lawgapc.com/practices/community-association-law/new-york-condo-association-rules/

Rent Control. New York City Rent Guidelines Board. 2019, https://www1.nyc.gov/site/rentguidelinesboard/resources/rent-control.page

Sarac, Florentina. Condo vs. Apartment: Which One Should You Choose When Renting? Rent Café. 21Nov. 2018. https://www.rentcafe.com/blog/renting/condo-vs-apartment-which-one-should-you-choose-when-renting/

Segal, Troy. What do real estate attorneys do? Investopedia. 16 Apr 2018,

What is the Difference Between a Condo and a Coop? Law Offices of Craig Delsack, LLC. 2019,

Purchasing a home in New York State

purchasing-home-in-new-york-state-lawyer-01Purchasing a home in New York State is as popular as ever. The allure of Niagara Falls, the call of the Adirondacks, and the siren scream of the big city continue to draw people even as prices drive out some residents. Finding a home in the seller’s market is difficult. The law office of David J. Aronstam helps with everything from contract negotiation to lending.

What is the housing market like in New York?

The market in the state varies drastically. The average number of listings grew by 4.1 percent in the first quarter of 2018 despite a general cooling off in New York City. Median sales prices also grew. The current median price sits at $275,000, a 6.8 percent increase in a quarter-to-quarter analysis.

The market is hot. People come and go, making finding an affordable home difficult. Wealth and the popularity of New York city keep the market from dropping. Forty-eight thousand people left the state in 2018, but that has not phased buyers and sellers, especially in a high-wealth economy.

With the current state of the economy, this trend is not likely to change within the coming months. New York is a financial hotbed. Generally, the state population is level with many people choosing to remain.

Obtaining value from your home purchase

new-york-state-real-estate-lawyer-buy-home-02In a seller’s market, it can be difficult to obtain the best deal. Average time on market drops as prices rise. It becomes difficult to obtain assurances that guarantee quality and value.

A lawyer helps in every step of the process. Conditional contracts keep your potential home from going to someone else as repairs are made. These contracts predicate sale on the completion of specific tasks and allow buyers to retain access to their dream home.

New York state allows for conditional contracts. Our courts also follow the four corners rule. Any items not within the confines of a written agreement are not considered by the courts if going against the contract.

We help clients obtain the assurances they need. Obtaining your dream home should not be difficult. There is no need to burden yourself with unnecessary repairs.

What do I need to know when purchasing a home?

new-york-state-property-lawyer-specialist-03Many considerations go into purchasing a home in the state. Contracts, documents, and title are all required before the deal is closed. Requirements are more difficult when purchasing a co-op space or condo. Bylaws and associations place strict regulations on what can be done even while taking care of maintenance and ensuring that your potential home is in good condition.

A lawyer helps prepare and review all documents. Contracts, promises, and agreements are not to be taken lightly. There is no reason to place loopholes in your documents.

Do I need documentation to obtain a loan?

Loan officers are not as lenient as before the economic crash of 2018. Institutions want to ensure that you can make payments. To do so, they require a plethora of documentation.

You should never give out more than is necessary. Information reveals a lot about who we. Privacy is important. A lawyer reviews and helps prepare documents to give you a leg up in the lending process. There is no need to reveal everything about your life.

A lawyer helps you get a leg up when purchasing a home. Contact me today to find out more.

David J. Aronstam, Esq.
(646) 759-0400


ResourcesCourt Excludes Parole Evidence Where Contract is Complete, Clear, and Unambigouous. Freiberger Haber LLP. 21 Aug 2017.
https://fhnylaw.com/court-excludes-parol-evidence-contract-complete-clear-unambiguous/Im, Julius. 7 Important Facts About New York Landlord and Tenant Laws. Avail. 2 Apr 2018,

Javier, David. A new report says New York City’s real estate downturn is deepening, and may not hit rock bottom for months. CNBC. 30 Dec. 2018, https://www.cnbc.com/2018/12/30/nyc-housing-prices-slide-further-may-last-for-months-warburg-realty.html

New York Property and Real Estate Laws. FindLaw. 2019,

Rent Control. New York City Rent Guidelines Board. 2019, https://www1.nyc.gov/site/rentguidelinesboard/resources/rent-control.page

Segal, Troy. What do real estate attorneys do? Investopedia. 16 Apr 2018,

2019 Home Value Trends in New York

2019 Home Value Trends in New YorkFor those wondering what the 2019 Home Value Trends in New York are, the big apple differs drastically from the rest of the state. While the city is in the throughs of a major downturn, prices and demand across the state remains strong. Even in New York City, prices in Manhattan hover near $1 million with other areas well over the state average. With an expensive market, obtaining the most value for your money is crucial. The law offices of David J. Aronstam helps clients obtain the best contract in such a demanding market.

Real estate trends in New York City

real-estate-trends-ny-nyc-2019-01New York City tends to be a popular choice for young people without families. As an epicenter of wealth, culture, and employment, there is no shortage of inhabitants moving to the city even as many continue to move out. However, after average home prices reached a peak in 2015, people started to leave the city, leveling population growth. The effect on the housing market was nearly instant. Housing prices dropped by 10 to 20 percent throughout the city.

There is no sign that the trend will stop. Home prices in Manhattan fell under $1 million to $990,000 while the average cost in Queens fell to less than $350000. Still, the population continues to grow slightly. The number of people is just increasing at a lower rate with many choosing to leave at the same time. This fluctuation creates more supply.

Real estate trends across the state

attorney-for-ny-real-estate-transactions-032019 Home Value Trends in New York state are experiencing the opposite effect. Despite a drastic population decline in cities such as Buffalo and Rochester, statewide home prices rose by 6.8 percent with a 4.1 percent increase in availability. This trend falls in line with the rest of the country where states with strong employment see a rapid increase in housing prices. The recent economic recovery continues to support prices. Desirable homes are simply selling for more than in the past.

Still, if population decline continues and the country enters a recession, this trend will not hold. It is likely that any decrease in demand will accompany a steep drop in prices. Meanwhile, the market favors sellers over buyers.

What can I expect when buying a home?

atty-buy-house-condo-apartment-contract-04With New York City still an attractive location and the current state of the housing market, finding your dream home may appear daunting. Buyers can expect counteroffers on any decent home. Still, with a declining population, some properties will not benefit from the boom.

The state follows the four corners law, the legal idea that the terms of the contract trump any unincluded information. There may appear to be pressure to make or receive a verbal promise, but this statement will not always hold up in a court of law.

There are protections available for buyers. Lawyers help obtain assurances without risking losing a chance to obtain your desired property. Conditional contracts give you the opportunity to purchase a property after repairs are made or requirements met. I help my clients avoid paying for necessary improvements, avoid contract loopholes, and ensure that the terms of any contract are clear. I also help with title searches and other common tasks that can create a headache in the process or down the road.

Never enter the purchasing process alone. Get in touch with me today to discuss your real estate transaction.

David J. Aronstam, Esq.
Attorney at Law

85 Broad Street
28th floor
New York, New York  10004
(646) 759-0400



Court Excludes Parole Evidence Where Contract is Complete, Clear, and Unambigouous. Freiberger Haber LLP. 21 Aug 2017, https://fhnylaw.com/court-excludes-parol-evidence-contract-complete-clear-unambiguous/

Im, Julius. 7 Important Facts About New York Landlord and Tenant Laws. Avail. 2 Apr 2018,

Javier, David. A new report says New York City’s real estate downturn is deepening, and may not hit rock bottom for months. CNBC. 30 Dec. 2018, https://www.cnbc.com/2018/12/30/nyc-housing -prices-slide-further-may-last-for-months-warburg-realty.html

New York Property and Real Estate Laws. FindLaw. 2019,

Rent Control. New York City Rent Guidelines Board. 2019, https://www1.nyc.gov/site/rentguidelinesboard/resources/rent-control.page

Segal, Troy. What do real estate attorneys do? Investopedia. 16 Apr 2018,

Should You Buy or Rent an Office in Manhattan?

buy-or-lease-commercial-nyc-office-space-info-01Deciding whether to buy or rent an office in Manhattan is not made by a “one-size-fits-all” perspective. You have to determine square footage, cost, future growth, space for employees, and industry needs. Also, you have to know your position and if you have the capital to buy a place of your own.
Location is crucial. Know your target market, demographics, and their locations. Geographic needs may limit your options for buying or leasing commercial real estate.

Lastly, you will ultimately have to face legal issues during the process, such as negotiations, paperwork, and contracts. Working with a real estate attorney for office purchases in Manhattan will make the process a lot less confusing and leave you feeling like you made the right choice to buy or rent.

Pros and Cons of Leasing or Buying Office Real Estate

Over the next few sections, take a look at some key differences in buying or renting an office space, as well as the benefits and drawbacks of each element.

Leasing Comparison

better-value-buy-lease-manhattan-office-top-nyc-real-estate-attorney-02When leasing or buying an office in Manhattan, you’ll have to negotiate and sign a contract. Being really specific about your needs will give you less negotiating room with the property owner. Leases can range from 1 to 5 years, and the majority of them are renewable.

Pros of Leasing:

  • Paying on a monthly lease has less financial exposure than buying
  • It gives you increased flexibility to change locations later
  • The property owner deals with most of the maintenance concerns.
  • Smaller spaces are readily available to rent, whereas office space for purchase tends to be large

Cons of Leasing:

  • Leasing someone else’s real estate suggests you’ll be limited in exactly what you can do
  • Some leases can last for 5 years or more
  • There are usually hidden costs that reveal themselves later
  • Leasing doesn’t allow for much customization for your business

Purchasing Comparison

top-lawyer-for-commercial-real-estate-transactions-nyc-03When purchasing an office in Manhattan you’ll most likely want to have a Special Warranty Deed issued. It protects you against liability for debts or damages caused by the previous owner.

Pros of Buying:

  • Your personal property can be used as collateral
  • You’ll have a fixed overhead with your commercial loan
  • You can get revenue from subletting
  • You have the flexibility to manage the home, and use the area how you desire

Cons of Buying:

  • Capital requirements are usually pretty high
  • There’s no guarantee that the property’s value will appreciate over time
  • You’ll have greater upkeep responsibilities
  • You’ll have to ensure your office is properly zoned if you plan to build on it

Work with a Professional You Can Trust

As with any major decision, hiring a professional that is looking out for your best interests can save you money, time, and future stress. A real estate attorney for office purchases in Manhattan can share his or her knowledge about the local neighborhoods that will be right for your business.

Give us a call at (646) 759-0400 or send us a message at the law offices of David J. Aronstam. We can arrange for a free, no-obligation consultation to help you gain clarity during the decision-making process.

4 Mistakes You Can’t Afford to Make when Signing an Office Lease in Manhattan

lawyer-for-commercial-office-leasing-manhattan-nyc-01Signing an office lease in manhattan requires attention-to-deal on part of the renter. This type of lease is generally long-term and can last for 5 years or more. An office lease is frequently the second biggest monthly expense after payroll.

Plus, the rights and restrictions specified can have a significant impact on your capability to expand, contract and relocate. As you can see, things can quickly go “off the rails.”

There Are Precautions that a Renter Can Take

The point is that any misstep can be devastating and costly. Instead of crossing your fingers, take a look at a few tips that may help you avoid future issues.

Mistake #1. Not Allowing for Enough Time

attorney-advice-commercial-office-leases-nyc-02Hopeful entrepreneurs should give 6 to 12 months to sign an office lease on 10,000 square feet and 9 to 18 months for larger spaces. Preparation is required for complex steps in any move for:

  • Negotiation of the lease
  • Working with a contractor and interior designer,
  • Bidding out and awarding the construction work required, and
  • Obtaining permits

Mistake #2: Not Hiring a Real Estate Attorney for Office Leases in Manhattan

There is no such thing as a “standard lease agreement.” Most landlords have their own interests in mind when they draft a lease. The financial terms and legal arrangements of the majority of office leases are complex. You’ll need a skilled real estate attorney that is licensed to practice in New York to help you navigate unique issues.

Mistake #3: Not Exercising Due Diligence to Investigate Compliance

The physical condition of your business’s space can significantly affect your business operations, and you have to safeguard yourself. In addition to examining the proposed lease, your real estate lawyer can confirm that the building’s zoning will allow your business to perform as usual.

Mistake #4: Not Focusing the Lease Negotiations on Key Business Issues

lease-contract-review-legal-top-nyc-lawyer-03Prospective renters should avoid solely focusing on rent and other payment terms – other crucial office lease elements can be far more critical to the future of your business. It is very important to ask the following questions:

  1. How much notice does the landlord need to give you if he or she wants to relocate your office to another part of the building?
  2. Can you sublet part of the lease?
  3. Can you obtain more square footage if your business expands?
  4. Can you cancel the lease and transfer to another building if there’s inadequate growth area?
  5. Can you extend the term if you wish to stay in the space?
  6. Can you designate the lease to a buyer of your business?

If a lot of this sounds like a lot to remember (on top of everything else), take the time to setup a meeting with a real estate attorney for office leases in Manhattan. He or she will be able to cover your bases and work in your interest. Aronstam Law can take a look at the proposed lease and provide guidance based on your business’ needs.

Call or email today for a free, no hassle consultation

David J. Aronstam, Esq.

85 Broad Street
28th floor
New York, New York  10004
(646) 759-0400

5 Negotiation Tips for Store Leases in Manhattan

nyc-retail-lease-negotiation-tips-lawyer-attorney-01What are some good negotiation tips for store leases in manhattan? Getting into a new storefront rental can be an exciting and stressful time. On one hand, it’s fun to imagine the purpose for each space; on the other, it can be frustrating to work out the lease agreement after finding the perfect location.
Negotiation is an important stage of signing a store lease in Manhattan. You don’t want to pay too much or find hidden terms that are nearly impossible to meet later on.

Approaches for Negotiating the Best Lease for You

In this article, we are going to look at 5 tips for negotiating a better lease and how a real estate attorney for store leases in Manhattan can become an invaluable asset to the process.

1. Consider the Length of the Lease

lawyer-specialist-for-negotiating-buildout-costs-nyc-landlord-02After finding an ideal space, discuss the length of the store lease with the property owner prior to completing a commercial rental application. This will ensure that you are both on the same page prior to taking more advanced steps.

A reasonable length of time for a store lease in Manhattan is generally one or two years for small businesses. An ‘option-to-renew’ provision is often included as well.

More cautious renters can opt for a shorter lease if you aren’t entirely convinced that the place is for you. The down-side is that a location dependent, retail store relies on consistency and foot traffic.

2. Do Your Homework

The amount you pay is an important consideration in a store lease agreement across targeted Manhattan neighborhoods. Do your homework and know exactly what it is going to cost in your area so you can work out a fair rate.

PRO TIP: Negotiating lease renewals consist of specifying rent increases, so you won’t have any surprises ahead.

3. Look for Hidden Costs in the Contract and Fine Print.


Your lease may be a “gross lease,” where all costs are consisted of, or a “net lease” where there are costs in addition to your lease. Numerous business leases make the occupant accountable for costs such as upkeep or maintenance in public areas.

Ask if your business will be responsible for any additional expenses. Work out caps on these amounts or negotiate an all-inclusive lease agreement. It’s also a good idea to ask how utilities are metered.

Contracts can contain a lot of hidden information. Speaking with a real estate attorney for store leases in Manhattan will help you find them.

4. Request For Favorable Provisions

Ask for modifications to the lease that will benefit you. You may want to ask for a provision that limits the owner from renting out any other storefront on the premises to a business similar to yours.

5. Review the Termination Clause Carefully

Make sure you look at the stipulations that pertain to default or termination of the store lease unexpectedly. It should include firm but fair terms that allow the renter to cure damages incurred by the property owner. Ideally, a negotiation for penalties upon early termination should be made before signing a lease.

How a Real Estate Attorney for Store Leases in Manhattan Can Help

By working with an experienced Manhattan real estate lawyer, you will have an ally that considers your best interests. He or she will be able to negotiate on your behalf and point out issues that need attention. Real estate attorney David Aronstam is on his client’s side in important real estate transactions.

Contact us today for a free, no-obligation consultation at (646) 759-0400.

For more information. please visit our main website at Aronstamlaw.com.

Experienced NYC Real Estate Attorney for Signing a Store Lease

Differences between Short-Term and Long-Term Store Leases in Manhattan

nyc-commercial-leasing-expert-attorney-01Deciding between a short-term and long-term lease is a major decision. Each choice carries its own benefits and drawbacks.

Long-term leases on stores are common in the real estate arena. Property owners try to work out leases of 20 years or more, primarily to control their expenses in the long run. Short-term leases are ending up being more common as sellers look to test merchants and markets prior to making a longer commitment.

A real estate attorney for store leases in Manhattan will be able to help you work through the decision-making process as to what works best for your unique situation.

The Advantages of a Long-Term Lease

A property owner may work out a long-term store lease in Manhattan for a variety of reasons. Most importantly, it provides the ability to predict future rental income, which is often the most significant month-to-month expense for tenants. A long-term lease also gives the renter dependability to stay in the same place long enough to develop itself in the neighborhood and build a routine client base.

Potential Drawbacks of a Long-Term Lease

commercial-leasing-info-legal-counsel-best-nyc-02The main downside to a long-term lease is the binding dedication required. If a retailer locates itself in an area that loses a great deal of customer traffic, it’s stuck until the lease ends. Some merchants alleviate this threat by stipulating that it can break the lease in particular situations. A buyout provision also produces an escape route, permitting a retailer to terminate the lease by making an affordable balloon payment at a certain point in the lease.

Uses for a Short-Term Lease

Short-term leases are helpful if a retailer wants to experiment in certain markets. It’s important to estimate the expense of utilities, upkeep, commercial rental insurance fees, and possible rent increases. Hopefully, rent will be consistent, given that you’ll likely sign a lease for a fixed-term at a specific amount. Check out the fine print, and be aware of the conditions under which a rate hike could occur.

Drawbacks of a Short-Term Lease

commercial-real-estate-lawyer-for-ny-retail-store-leases-03Short-term leases have possible downsides on retailers. The expense of building out a store and filling it with inventory can be really high and is not quickly amortized over a short-term lease. The marketplace characteristics of a location can change quickly as well.

A store lease in Manhattan might have a longer rental term when renewing a lease after the initial deal was signed. Landlords choose long-term store lease commitments for the simple reason that they don’t have to worry about the commercial property sitting empty anytime in the near future.

Evaluate Your Thoughts with a Trusted Adviser

It’s not easy deciding between 3 years and 15+ years. Hopeful store lessees need to make the decision that is right for him or her.

At Aronstam Law , we focus on helping local neighborhood retailers move through getting questions answered, so they can move ahead.

Feel free to schedule a no-obligation consultation to show you why we will earn your business and build a long-lasting partnership.