Understand if the age your space warrants an Asbestos Abatement or Hazardous Materials study. This should be recognized prior to your lease and during your due diligence. These items have serious heath and cost implications, and authorities with jurisdiction, such as the air quality management agency or building department, will require an abatement survey and removal of their existence prior to issuance of a building permit for your remodel. Discuss asbestos with your real estate broker prior to leasing a space, and certainly discuss it with your general contractor.
Existing conditions pose huge budgetary and schedule issues to a new tenant or building owner. It’s very important that due diligence is conducted to determine what issues need to be addressed.