On January 6, 2020, Jill Rowe was quoted in Retail Dive on the retailer-landlord relationship, which may be entering not just a new year, but a new era. According to the article, many store tenants and landlords are reshaping their leases based on lessons learned from the COVID-19 pandemic.
"This has been the year of landlords and tenants sort of compromising regardless of what the lease says, which is very, very interesting to watch,” Rowe said. "Not across the board, of course, and many tenants just had to go out of business because they couldn't afford anything under any compromise situation. But where it was possible to work out deals, people did.”
What comes next in the retail tenant-landlord relationship remains up in the air, but some trends are emerging, including a new level of flexibility on the part of both parties. Going forward, landlords will likely be dealing with better-informed tenants.
Many force majeure clauses were quite "landlord friendly," according to Rowe, and that has led many retailers to more closely scrutinize their leases and better understand them. Landlords are also being more flexible on other details, like lease terms, she said.
"We're still figuring it out," she said of what the new normal may be. "Some tenants are asking for very long leases and some are asking for short leases," she said. "It's just much less uniform.”
Click here to access the article.