When you are buying or selling a business or a parcel of land that will be used commercially in St. Lucia, the process is often more involved than a residential purchase or sale. Commercial real estate (CRE) involves lengthier negotiations and detailed contracts, inspections, zoning considerations, tax issues, and finding favorable financing.
St. Lucia’s investor-friendly laws and customs make it an ideal place to start or expand your business. To start the process, consider reaching out to a St. Lucia commercial real estate negotiation lawyer who can negotiate price and other conditions, draft appropriate documentation, provide advice on financing, conduct due diligence, and provide you with a comprehensive Purchase and Sale Agreement.
What Factors Influence CRE Negotiations?
Each CRE transaction is unique, and many factors influence negotiations. Some of the aspects our Principal Attorney at Athena Law will consider include:
- Laws and customs
- Market trends in lending and method of financing if the transaction is not a cash one
- Whether the parties are citizens or foreign nationals
- The intended use for the property which could trigger industry-specific factors
- The number of commercial parcels involved
- How soon the parties wish to close
Many details must be researched and scrutinized to ensure a smooth transition from seller to buyer. For instance, non-citizens must obtain an alien landholding license to acquire property. An experienced St. Lucia commercial real estate attorney can handle ancillary factors and negotiate and prepare the necessary legal documents.
Negotiating Different Elements of CRE Transactions
Once a CRE property is identified, the parties will typically execute a a Letter of Intent (LOI)outlining key elements of their intention. An LOI is an agreement to negotiate the transaction. It is not binding on the parties, except in most cases, for confidentiality and non-solicitation of other buyers or sellers for a specific period. Once an LOI is signed, generally, its terms become non-negotiable and will be incorporated in the Purchase and Sale Agreement, although other matters are negotiated in the final document.
The Purchase and Sale Agreement
The due diligence period is usually mentioned in the LOI, but some aspects are negotiated for the purchase document. This might include due diligence extension rights and the representations and warranties the parties agree to, which are the facts they rely on before agreeing to the transaction. Although representations and warranties are specific to the transaction, most include facts about the seller’s formation and authority to sell the property, any active leases or contracts, environmental concerns, and any substantial active litigation.
What Are Covenants?
Covenants relate to the seller’s use of the property before closing, inclusive of responsibility for certain maintenance and repairs between the date of the Agreement and the closing.
Closing conditions must occur before the purchaser pays the purchase price. For example, the purchaser must obtain a Certificate of Eligibility and Aliens Landholding Licence. Lacking these, a purchaser could lose a deposit or purchase without important considerations such as zoning approvals or lender consent if the buyer is assuming a mortgage. If an active business is sold, the parties must also negotiate how revenue earned before the sale but collected after closing will be apportioned.
A St. Lucia attorney with extensive knowledge of commercial real estate can negotiate a deal that will satisfy all parties.
A St. Lucia Commercial Real Estate Negotiation Attorney Offers Guidance
If your dream has been to own and run a business in one of the world’s most beautiful locations, or if you already own CRE and are considering expanding your portfolio or are considering expanding into a bigger space and selling your current property, having dedicated guidance can make all the difference. We can negotiate the best deal for you, draft all the documents you will need, conduct due diligence, and get you to closing, all while ensuring you feel empowered and in control throughout the process while enjoying the freedom to focus on the things that really drive you.
The Principal Attorney at Athena Law has over 25 years of experience applying St. Lucia law and guiding buyers on their property acquisition journeys. Consider getting in touch today to learn how your dream can become a reality with help from a St. Lucia commercial real estate negotiation lawyer.