Leasing and Property Management

Venable’s Leasing and Property Management lawyers represent a broad cross section of clients, including developers, investors, asset managers, corporations, utility and telecommunications companies, professional services firms, retailers, and local government, national, and international organizations. Many of our clients have multiple locations both domestically and abroad.

Our leasing attorneys regularly advise landlords, tenants, and property managers on their leasing and ongoing operations challenges and have been involved in virtually every type of leasing transaction, including the following:

  • Ground leases
  • Office buildings
  • Hotel and resorts
  • Shopping center and retail spaces
  • Restaurants and entertainment venues
  • Industrial and warehouse properties
  • Data centers
  • Technology campuses
  • Telecommunications facilities

Our real estate attorneys have wide-ranging experience representing companies in private sector and government leasing transactions. Venable’s depth in leasing allows us to staff transactions and projects in virtually any geographic area with the right team of professionals, calling upon a worldwide network of firms with which we have worked to provide local knowledge when needed. Our Real Estate Group is frequently called upon to structure, negotiate, and document transactions that include special-purpose long-term ground leases, corporate facilities, technology campuses, shopping centers, and pad retail and other commercial properties. We have substantial experience in negotiating and documenting commercial leases from the perspectives of the landlord and the tenant, including multi-property, ground, net, natural resource, and build-to-suit leases, as well as co-location, subletting, and tenant improvement agreements. The firm is also called upon to advise on the full range of property management and brokerage agreements.

Venable also has a long-standing Government Leasing Practice. Leasing to the General Services Administration (GSA) involves unique structural, business, and legal issues and requires a special understanding of federal procurement and other legal requirements. Our real estate attorneys have represented property owners and developers in responding to GSA and federal agency solicitations for federal build-to-suit procurements and have extensive market knowledge and experience in dealing with issues relating to GSA tenancies.

Although Venable’s steadfast commitment is to provide proactive legal counsel designed to mitigate disputes, the firm also advises on lease disputes, workouts, buyouts, and defaults. When necessary, our attorneys draw upon the firm’s extensive Real Estate Litigation, Government Contracts, and Bankruptcy Groups if and when a dispute cannot be resolved through careful and considerate negotiation.

Leasing and property management agreements are often complicated. In the event a dispute cannot be resolved through negotiation and litigation ensues, Venable attorneys stand ready to vigorously defend our client’s position. Our litigators have resolved claims ranging from unreasonable restrictions to breach of lease, failure to pay rent, and unreasonable refusal to allow subleases. The firm has also been involved in claims pertaining to the failure to maintain property, actual property damage, violation of rights by neighboring property owners/tenants, and unfair and deceptive trade practices, among others.

Our Team

  • Counsel to one-third of publicly held REITs in America
  • American College of Real Estate Lawyers
    • Seven members
    • Two past presidents
  • American Bar Association
    • Current member, ABA House of Delegates
    • Current chair, ABA Task Force on Gatekeeper Regulation and the Profession
    • Former chair, ABA Section of Real Property, Trust and Estate Law

Practice Focus

  • Development
  • Acquisition and disposition
  • Condominiums/cooperatives
  • Construction contracts
  • Environmental concerns
  • Hotel management agreements
  • Joint ventures
  • Like-kind exchanges
  • Public-private partnerships
  • Stock purchase agreements
  • Leasing
  • Biotechnology
  • Build-to-suit transactions
  • Government
  • Ground leases
  • Office
  • Retail and restaurant
  • Warehouse/industrial
  • Defeasance
  • Hedges/swaps
  • Mezzanine financing
  • Mortgage lending/borrowing
  • Sale/leaseback
  • Securitized lending
  • Strategies for dealing with distressed real estate
  • Tax-exempt bonds
  • Tax increment financing
  • Tax planning for real estate transactions
  • PILOT agreements
  • Recordation and transfer tax planning
  • Tax exemptions


  • Represented the International Bank for Reconstruction and Development (World Bank) in connection with the World Bank’s leasing and construction needs. Our work recently included developing and negotiating the World Bank’s lease of an entire office building in Washington, DC’s central business district to the United States of America, acting through the General Services Administration (GSA), for use by the State Department. This matter involved a complex long-term lease for more than 463,000 square feet of space between a sovereign state and an international organization during a challenging political environment for federal government leasing
  • Represented LCOR in a joint venture with USAA in a build-to-suit lease for the Nuclear Regulatory Commission adjacent to the White Flint East Metro station
  • Represented Intelsat in its relocation of its U.S. headquarters (including more than 430 employees) from Washington, DC to Tysons Tower in Fairfax County, Virginia. Intelsat is involved in leasing approximately 188,000 square feet of space in Tysons Tower. This lease transaction was the first major deal to make the Metro-oriented redevelopment of Tysons Corner a reality. Venable also provided valuable guidance related to zoning and entitlement issues
  • Handled the negotiation of all 160 Warner Brothers Studio Store leases throughout the United States
  • Represented the landlord in a build-to-suit lease of a 1.1 million-square-foot headquarters building for the United States Securities and Exchange Commission
  • Representation of the owner of a national chain of stores in connection with the exit negotiations of all of its leaseholds throughout the southwestern United States
  • Representation of a tenant in connection with the relocation of its headquarters
  • Ongoing representation of a global real estate financial services and asset management firm, which involves lease and contract negotiations for facilities in cities, including New York, London, Frankfurt, Madrid, Paris, Hong Kong, Singapore, Tokyo, Sydney, and Santiago