Are you delaying making decisions on an approaching lease expiration? Many firms are, especially if they have a plan to simply renew in place. This can be a mistake.

That decision delay is fine as long as you protect your negotiation leverage. How? Delay the renew/relocate decision, but not the renew/relocate actions.

The chart below details how negotiation leverage declines as an expiration date approaches, along with the actions that should occur in a lease negotiation process. The timeline will vary a bit based on the size of the space – large users will need more and smaller firms a bit less. The two largest milestones are the point at which new construction options become unfeasible and when a comfortable relocation becomes unfeasible.

Remember that the point isn’t to necessarily relocate, it is to have the option to relocate. Generally, the more time and more options, the greater the negotiating #leverage. Don’t get caught sitting on your hands.