Virginia Commercial Lease Agreement

A Virginia commercial lease agreement is a legal contract between a landlord and a business tenant, establishing the terms and conditions governing the rental of commercial property within the state of Virginia. It addresses key elements, including rent details, lease duration, maintenance obligations, and other specific provisions tailored to commercial leasing in Virginia.

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Virginia Commercial Lease Agreement

Security Deposit Limits and Handling

  • The state laws don’t limit how much the security deposit can be so landlords can ask for anything within reason. However, most lessors keep to the residential limit of up to two months’ rent.
  • The security deposit can mingle with other funds, so there’s no specific account the lessor must keep it in.
  • The landlord doesn’t need to bear or pay annual interest on the security deposit.
  • There aren’t specific laws regarding when lessors must return the security deposit. However, most follow the standard period of 45 days for residential leases.

Right of Entry for Inspections and Repairs

  • Like any residential lease, the landlord must notify the tenant to enter the premises. However, this notice can differ depending on the sensitive nature of the business. Generally, it falls between 24 and 48 hours.
  • If the landlord wants to do an inspection, they must give the tenant at least 72 hours’ notice. The inspection must also be during business hours.
  • For most long-term commercial leases, the tenants have a duty to repair. This duty means that the tenant must keep the premises in good condition. 
  • On the other hand, landlords must ensure the facilities are habitable. Any structural problems that affect habitability are the lessor’s responsibility.

Environmental Responsibilities

  • Any person who has an interest in the property has environmental responsibilities.
  • Landlords must ensure the tenants are aware of the environmental responsibilities associated with the property.
  • Lessees whose business affects environmental issues must abide by the federal, state, and local laws surrounding the issue.
  • Should an environmental covenant be in place, the tenant must give access to the property for any related procedure.

Notice Requirements

  • For monthly commercial leases, there’s a 30-day notice period. 
  • If the commercial lease has no fixed term, then either party must provide 120 days’ notice before ending it.
  • Fixed-term leases don’t have a defined notice period due to the established end date.
  • If tenants break a fixed-term lease, they can experience penalties unless they reach another agreement with the landlord.
  • Penalties can include paying a penalty fee or whichever penalty the landlord describes in the lease.

Include Required Disclosures

Virginia isn’t strict when it comes to legal disclosures. While residential contracts have various disclosures, commercial ones only require the following:

  • Lead-Based Paint: This federal disclosure states that lessors must inform lessees of the presence of lead-based paint. It’s only applicable if the building is older than 1978, and the lessor must also explain the hazards of it.