Regardless of your planning, careful budgeting and attention to financial detail, you may find you have more month than money. Clients are slow to pay and new business is down to a trickle. You have cut back on expansion plans and on desired luxuries. You are making minimum payments on credit cards and other bills when possible. fi

This month, you will not be able to make a full rent payment. Business is not bad enough for you to consider bankruptcy. What do you do?

Communicate with your landlord. Be honest about your financial situation and ask for modification in your rental payments. If you have been financially responsible, paid your rent and other obligations on time and are not considered “difficult”, your landlord will probably be willing to make concessions to keep you as a tenant especially if there are several vacant offices or stores on the property.

Some options you might suggest are a temporary reduction in rent for a short term – such as ninety days – in exchange for an early renewal of your lease. In some instances, landlords have been known to offer up to four months of free rent to keep their property occupied by a tenant who was previously financially stable.

You should be willing to provide financial statements to your landlord when requesting rent concessions to prove that your situation is really dire and that you are not merely attempting to take advantage of the economic downturn as some tenants have done. Bringing your records with you when initially asking for rent relief will likely go far to prove your sincerity.