Tenant Representation

Pittsburgh’s commercial real estate market is more volatile than ever.  Navigating the commercial office space market requires up to date data, strong negotiating skills and experience that are equal to the landlord’s professional representation.   The talents of senior management and the staff need to be focused on the execution of their mission.  Responsibilities outside of their area of expertise are best left with professionals who are experts in those arenas that rarely are in demand.  Since most managers may move an office only a very few times in their career many companies now rely on Avison Young to provide the guidance and knowledge to evaluate and execute the optimal strategy for their real estate needs.  Each transaction is unique with numerous details that need to be analyzed, scheduled and implemented.

Whether you need to negotiate a single lease or manage multiple real estate transactions Avison Young delivers the latest market knowledge, technology and training focused on achieving your company’s goals.  The objective of controlling occupancy costs, maximizing productivity or improving employee recruitment requires a dedicated expert advisor whose knowledge, discipline and creativity are focused on meeting your objectives.  During my 27 year career I have assisted major corporations as well as locally owned firms throughout the Tri-state area.  To achieve these goals we utilized a 10 step process:

  • Define your goals and objectives
  • Detail the objectives in writing
  • Market research
  • Property analysis & tours
  • Request for proposal
  • Financial analysis
  • Space planning & efficiency
  • Negotiate Letter of Intent
  • Lease review
  • Lease summary & critical dates

The biggest mistake that companies make is waiting too long.  Quite often they will begin to think about looking for new space six or eight months before their lease expires.  Landlords know that this is not enough time to truly evaluate the market and at that point the tenant has lost some leverage.  From the time a location is identified and the business terms are agreed upon the typical schedule looks like this:

 Final lease review and execution: 7-10 days
 Final space planning and construction drawings: 30-45 days
 Construction bids: 10-20 days
 Permitting: 15-45 days
 Order materials and buildout: 60-120 days
 Final punch list and move-in: 10-15 days
 Total time from lease execution: 130-255 days
or 4-8 months


To complete a thorough search, evaluate the best available options, establish geographic parameters, tour buildings issue RFP’s, have test fit drawings completed, evaluate and negotiate LOI’s and complete the negotiations can take an additional six months.

Can this process be done in less time, the answer is yes.  Will it be optimal that is very unlikely.  The ideal time to begin thinking about your upcoming renewal is approximately 12-18 months before the end of your lease.  Assume that you are going to have to move and plan appropriately.