Are you a tenant? A landlord thinking about selling? Or an investor looking to buy a leased property? If you have answered “yes” to any of these questions, it is important that you understand what a tenant estoppel certificate is and the benefits and protections it offers.
What is a tenant estoppel certificate?
A tenant estoppel certificate is a legally binding document signed by a tenant verifying the current status and terms of a lease and specifying any modifications to the original agreement, defaults by the landlord, or other issues relating to the lease. Typically, an estoppel certificate is requested by the landlord as part of the due diligence process before closing on the sale of a property. This statement of facts regarding the lease and the premises estops either party from making a claim that contradicts those facts post transaction.
If you lease, own, or want to purchase a tenant-occupied property, it’s important to understand how a Tenant Estoppel Certificate can protect you.
Most commercial real estate lease agreements include a provision requiring a tenant to complete an estoppel certificate within a specified amount of time after receiving the Landlord’s request. However, only a landlord wishing to sell or refinance the property would request the estoppel. If a lease does not have a provision requiring a tenant to complete an estoppel certificate, it is in the best interest of the tenant to carefully review and complete the estoppel certificate to verify all pertinent lease information.
Why sign a tenant estoppel certificate?
From the tenant’s perspective, an estoppel certificate informs and certifies to the purchaser of the property (i.e., the new landlord under the lease) and, in the event of financing, the lender of any existing issues they will need to address after closing. For lenders and purchasers, the estoppel certificate verifies information presented by the landlord regarding the tenant, the premises, and certain material terms of the lease, which helps prevent any costly surprises after closing.
As a full-service commercial real estate firm, Kelley Commercial Partners provides landlord and tenant representation. And no matter which side we represent, we are committed to successfully guiding you through the process from the beginning through closing. For all your commercial real estate needs, let us be your partner to success.
For all of your commercial real estate questions, ask a professional at Kelley Commercial Partners
A 1031 exchange, also known as a tax-deferred exchange, gets its name from the Internal Revenue Code 1031. Essentially, this rule in the tax code allows investors to defer certain tax liabilities they would otherwise incur after making a profit from a real estate investment. This can be an incredibly effective tool for investors who find themselves in a situation in which they would like to sell a real estate holding, but do not want to incur the tax burdens such a transaction would create.
In order to take advantage of the 1031 exchange rule, you must replace the property you are selling (the relinquished property) by purchasing another property (the replacement property) with one of equal or greater value and similar in kind and use. For example, if you are relinquishing a rental property for $100,000, you must replace it with another rental property with one valued at $100,000 or more. (You may also have the option to buy several rental properties, so long as the sum total of their value is $100,000 or more). So, unfortunately, you cannot relinquish a rental property and replace it with a vacation home because those two properties would not be alike in kind and use.
In addition to these restrictions, there is a set time frame in which all of these transactions must occur. Once the relinquished property has closed, investors have 45 days to identify the replacement property and 180 days to close that transaction.
Finding buyers for the properties you wish to relinquish, while at the same time attempting to identify equitable exchange properties can be challenging, especially considering the time restrictions. Proper attention must be paid to the details of how 1031 exchanges work and how using them might affect your long-term plans. This is why it is so important to find an experienced CRE professional you can trust to help you with the due diligence commercial real estate transactions require.
If you have any questions regarding a tax-deferred exchange or any other commercial real estate issue, Kelley Commercial Partners brokers and associates are here to provide the answers and support you need to make successful decisions.