As an Arizona commercial real estate owner, your tenants may fall behind on their rent, damage your property or violate the terms of your commercial real estate lease.
Many commercial leases are long-term in length. If your tenant has generally been a good tenant over the years, you might not necessarily want to evict them, but want to find a way to resolve the dispute.
What does mediation involve?
With the advice of a legal professional, you can determine if mediation would be a beneficial option for your situation. Mediation is a meeting between you, your tenant and a mediator.
A mediator is a third party who listens to both you and your tenant state your positions in the dispute and guides you toward a resolution. A mediator does not have the power to make a ruling or an order like a judge.
However, this can work to your advantage because a mediator can be more focused on helping you and your tenant work toward creative, common-sense solutions.
Mediation is shorter and less expensive
One of the main advantages of mediation is that it saves time and money. Filing an eviction lawsuit can be costly. You must pay court costs and filing fees, which can quickly add up. You also take the risk of the judge ruling against you, meaning you might not recoup these costs.
The court process also usually lasts much longer than mediation. There are several steps and waiting periods involved when filing an eviction lawsuit. You could very well hold your mediation and have your dispute resolved long before you would have made it through the eviction court process.
A mediation is usually meant to last approximately 2-3 hours, while a court hearing could take a half-day or even a full day.
Mediation can help you remain on good terms with your tenant
Mediation is also a non-adversarial process compared to traditional litigation. If your ultimate goal is not eviction, but to simply resolve the dispute and keep your tenant, mediation can help you preserve your landlord-tenant relationship.
If you do reach a resolution through mediation, both you and your tenant are likely to feel happier with the outcome because both of you had a part in solving the problem. When you leave everything up to a judge, one or both of you may come away unhappy.