Lease Audit Information


Customer Service:

Rarely in a lease do you see a provision or language relating to the customer service center or information booth of the shopping center. However, the landlord will almost always include the expenses of such a center in CAM - even though the customer service center has nothing to do with the maintenance or operation of the common areas.

The following information (according to a brochure provided by the Steeplegate Mall in Nashua, NH) provides a good description of the typical customer service center:

Customer Service Center - Conveniently located in the Food Court. Our friendly staff will be happy to answer any questions you may have about Steeplegate Mall, including special events, store and restaurant locations and any of our convenient services. Steeplegate Mall directories, photocopies, fax service, and bus service information can all be obtained at the Customer Service Center. For your added convenience, we offer these additional services:

  • Strollers and Wheelchairs
  • Handicap Access
  • Express Parking
  • Bus Service
  • Employment Opportunities
  • "Steeplegaiters" Mall Walkers Club
  • Fax Service
  • Mail Drop-Off and Stamps
  • Lost and Found
  • Store Gift Certificate Directories

Clearly the Customer Service Center is more marketing or promotional in nature (for which most tenants pay an additional lease charge) than it is common area maintenance. Each individual tenant should be able to decide whether or not they wish to pay for these types of expenses. The Landlord should not arbitrarily decide to include these expenses in CAM. Also, ask your landlord where the income generated by the Customer Service Center goes. In most cases, you will find that this income goes toward the marketing of the center.

Many Landlords have developed the defense that the Customer Service Center should be included in CAM because the center is responsible for dispatching security. This may be an additional responsibility of the center, but it certainly would not justify the inclusion of 100% of the expenses in CAM.

If you have any questions, concerns or ideas for this site, please do not hesitate to contact us!

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