Commercial buyers and the due diligence period

Buying a commercial property can be an important investment, so it is essential to ensure the proper completion of each step. After signing the contract, you enter the due diligence period. Knowing how to use this time effectively can help you avoid a variety of problems later on.

Although the seller may have to provide some types of disclosure, a wise buyer will not simply rely on them. Even a seller who does not intend to deceive can fail to disclose important information through mistakes or unawareness. It is typically easier to avoid a problematic situation early on than to go to court later.


One essential matter to investigate is the issue of the title. The seller can only give you what he or she already possesses. If there is any entity other than the seller with any type of claim to the property, you need to know. Likewise, you need to know about any easements and uses that exist, as they typically pass with the property. An easement may not necessarily present a problem for you. In some cases, it may actually benefit you. Discussing the matter with your attorney can help you make an informed decision.

Environmental factors

An environmental study is important, as relevant factors may not be immediately apparent but can affect your future use of the premises. Using the services of certified environmental consultants can help you avoid overlooking potential issues.

Laws and regulations

As a commercial buyer, you likely have a specific use in mind when purchasing premises. Thus, investigating local zoning regulations, building codes and permit or licensing requirements is vital before you finalize the deal. Your area may also require specific inspections before you can begin your intended use.

Building inspection

Finally, you will need to conduct a building inspection to learn whether there are critical, expensive problems. Important areas to check include structural integrity, electrical wiring, the HVAC system and plumbing. While there are few buildings in entirely perfect condition, you need to know what it will take to bring your premises to an acceptable standard.