Location: New York
We have rented a small office in Upstate New York to a retail tenant that has been timely with the rental payments and not created any problems during their five year tenancy. This is lease is due to expire in July 2015. In December they requested a rent reduction since business was terrible and they literally had no money to pay us until the second and third week of December. They promised to pay with the rent reduction their future rent payments on time. For January we just spoke to the representative and he just stated that he could not pay the rent due to the lack of funds and to possibly pay it by this Friday, January 9th. In the meantime, he has told us they have sold one store and closed two others leaving five stores remaining. There is one store in particular that is doing well and they are trying other avenues of sales and marketing.
Unfortunately, we feel we are getting the raw end of the deal. How could they not have money to pay the rent, which is not that out of line with the rest of the area, and yet pay themselves and the utilities and other vendors. We were alerted this summer by the lawn maintenance company that they had not paid him for the entire season and asked if we were being paid. At that time, we were being paid and were not alerted to any problems.
I have a feeling they may either abandon the building one evening, may not pay all of the rent even though I will try to get as much as possible or continue this right until the end of the lease terms.
We are trying to hold out so that they pay us at least for January but in the meantime market the building to other prospective tenants. Our attorney knows of the situation but not the latest development with the non-payment of rent for January.
Our thought is to try and get someone in there that is a responsible tenant and that can pay the rent.
Should we file a summons or complaint with our attorney or try to work this out? Any advice and/or suggestions would be helpful.
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