Once you sign a lease, you are legally bound to fulfil all conditions, such as paying rent, for the full term of the lease. Verbal agreements to change the lease are not binding.
If you and the landlord (the person or company leasing you the premises) want to change the lease, this must be done in writing by your solicitor and the landlord's solicitor. Both you and the landlord must agree to any changes.
If both you and the landlord understand and agree to the lease conditions, there should be no disputes. This is why it is essential that all terms and conditions in the lease are clearly worded and cannot be misread.
Common areas for confusion include rent increases and lease renewals. Keep a copy of your lease in a safe place so you can find it easily if you need to check the wording of a clause. If you are not sure what something means, ask your solicitor to explain it to you.
Ask for help
Trying to resolve a dispute yourself can often make the situation worse. Without a mediator, a disagreement over the lateness of rent payments can escalate into a large dispute about rent increases. Make a note of all conversations you have with the landlord about the lease. This information may be helpful in mediation.
Retail shop lease disputes
The Queensland Civil and Administrative Tribunal (QCAT) can help with disputes about retail shop leases. QCAT offers mediation and hearings to resolve these disputes.
Learn more about retail shop lease disputes.