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Understanding the Difference Between Gross and Net Leases

When venturing into the world of commercial real estate, one crucial aspect that businesses often grapple with is understanding different types of leases. Gross leases and net leases are two common lease structures that vary significantly. In this article, we delve into the differences between these two types of leases and how One World Commercial can guide businesses through the leasing process.

Deciphering Lease Structures

In commercial real estate, a lease is a legal agreement that allows a tenant to use a property for a set period in return for payment to the landlord. Lease structures determine who — between the landlord and the tenant — is responsible for the property’s various expenses.

Understanding Gross Leases

A gross lease, also known as a full-service lease, is a lease structure where the landlord covers most property-related expenses, including property taxes, insurance, and maintenance. The tenant typically pays a single, all-inclusive rent amount, allowing for more predictable budgeting.

Exploring Net Leases

In contrast, a net lease requires the tenant to cover some or all of the property's operating expenses in addition to the base rent. There are three types of net leases: single net (N), double net (NN), and triple net (NNN).

  1. Single Net Lease (N): The tenant pays the base rent and property taxes. The landlord covers insurance and maintenance costs.

  2. Double Net Lease (NN): The tenant pays the base rent, property taxes, and insurance premiums. The landlord is responsible for maintenance costs.

  3. Triple Net Lease (NNN): The tenant pays all operating expenses, including property taxes, insurance premiums, and maintenance costs, in addition to the base rent.

Gross Leases vs. Net Leases: The Differences

  1. Expense Responsibility: The most significant difference between gross and net leases lies in who shoulders the property's operating expenses. In a gross lease, the landlord bears these costs, while in a net lease, the tenant typically covers these expenses.

  2. Rent Amount: Gross leases usually have higher rent amounts since they include operating expenses. Net leases tend to have lower base rents, but the additional costs can make them more expensive overall.

  3. Budgeting: Gross leases offer more predictable budgeting for tenants, as they pay a fixed monthly rent. Net leases, on the other hand, can be less predictable due to fluctuating operating costs.

  4. Control: Net leases can offer tenants more control over the property, particularly in a triple net lease, where the tenant handles maintenance.

Navigating Leases with One World Commercial

Understanding and negotiating lease terms can be complex, making it beneficial to work with an experienced commercial real estate firm like One World Commercial. With a deep understanding of the commercial real estate landscape, they can provide invaluable guidance and support throughout the leasing process.


Choosing between a gross lease and a net lease depends on a company's specific needs, financial capacity, and risk tolerance. While gross leases offer simplicity and predictability, net leases can provide more control and potential cost savings. With expert guidance from firms like One World Commercial, businesses can navigate these leasing structures and select the one that best aligns with their objectives.

References and Further Reading

  1. One World Commercial

  2. Investopedia - Gross Lease

  3. Investopedia - Net Lease

For more information about how One World Commercial can support your business's leasing needs, visit their website.

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