Small businesses: dealing with your landlord and suppliers

For many small businesses, the key to getting through the Covid-19 pandemic may be negotiating a sympathetic arrangement with the landlord or key suppliers.

For many small businesses, the key to getting through the Covid-19 pandemic may be negotiating a sympathetic arrangement with the landlord or key suppliers. Are they prepared to offer rent or payment holidays during the height of the crisis to help you with short-term cash-flow pressures?

In practice, it will be in the interests of many landlords and suppliers to help rather than lose tenants and customers altogether. But to negotiate the right deal, you need to approach the situation carefully and sensitively.

Start with a clear plan. What do you need from your landlord and for how long do you need this support? Strike a balance between asking for all the help you will realistically need – going back later to ask for further forbearance may get a negative reaction – and pushing too hard. Landlords and suppliers will have their own pressures.

Talk to your landlord and suppliers as soon as you can, ideally before you miss any payments. The later you leave it, the weaker your negotiating position will be. Set out the benefits of offering your business help: where possible, remind landlords and suppliers of your good payment history and strong credit score and provide detail of your longer-term prospects. Make the point that others in your sector – potentially alternative tenants and customers – will be in the same boat as you. Where you can pay at least something, offer to do so. This will often be better received than a request for a complete payments holiday. It also means the landlord or supplier will be better off with you than with no customer or tenant at all.

Recommended

The bill for Covid bailout loans falls due for small businesses
Small business

The bill for Covid bailout loans falls due for small businesses

Here’s your business can tackle repayment demands for emergency Covid bailout loan schemes
14 May 2021
How invoice financing can help your business
Small business

How invoice financing can help your business

Invoice financing can be a useful alternative to other types of funding in the right circumstances, says David Prosser
4 May 2021
Can your business secure a Restart Grant?
Small business

Can your business secure a Restart Grant?

Is your business eligible for the Restart Grant, the government-backed scheme that provides funding for firms as they emerge from the Covid-19 lockdow…
30 Apr 2021
Recovery Loan Scheme: the latest government aid package for small businesses
Small business

Recovery Loan Scheme: the latest government aid package for small businesses

The Recovery Loan Scheme will help companies weather the pandemic
16 Apr 2021

Most Popular

How will Joe Biden’s capital gains tax rise affect crypto prices?
Bitcoin & crypto

How will Joe Biden’s capital gains tax rise affect crypto prices?

The US president wants to increase capital gains tax – and that’s going to hit a lot of American cryptocurrency speculators. Saloni Sardana looks at h…
14 May 2021
Inheritance tax planning: the rules around gifting
Inheritance tax

Inheritance tax planning: the rules around gifting

There are plenty of legal ways to minimise an inheritance tax bill. Perhaps the simplest is to give away assets to reduce the size of your estate. Dav…
11 May 2021
Are we nearing the end of the negative bond yield era?
Government bonds

Are we nearing the end of the negative bond yield era?

As inflation gets going, the era of the negative bond yield – that investors have to pay governments for the privilege of lending them money – might b…
14 May 2021