Use and Lease of Real Estate
Responsible University Officer(s):
- Associate Vice President and Controller
- Assistant Director - Leasing and Facility Management
University real estate (land, buildings, including space within a building, air rights, water rights, and mineral rights) owned and leased must be used for purposes that contribute to its mission of research and discovery, teaching and learning, and outreach and public service, unless a written agreement provides for another approved use of the real estate by a non-University entity. University units are responsible for overseeing the proper use of real estate assigned to or used by them.
All real estate is owned by Regents of the University of Minnesota, not by the campus, collegiate or administrative unit that is assigned, occupies, or otherwise uses the real estate.
The University recognizes that:
- the purpose of a non-University entity may coincide with or complement that of the University;
- its facilities may be particularly well-suited for specific short-term uses by non-University entities; and
- excess capacity may exist for certain facilities during certain times of the year.
Non-University entities, and individual faculty and staff leasing University real estate for personal use, require a written agreement, regardless of duration of use or amount of rent paid, except uses by Registered Student Organizations (RSOs) of classroom space with less than 100 seats, designated outdoor spaces per the Outdoor Space Reservation Process, and RSO events covered by the University's liability insurance. University uses receive scheduling priority over non-University entities (see Appendices section of this policy).
No University unit or individual can enter into a use or lease agreement without the approval authority of the Real Estate Office.
REASON FOR POLICY
To implement Board of Regents Policy: Property and Facility Use by providing a framework to ensure that real estate owned and leased by the University is used to provide facilities for faculty, staff and students in support of the University's mission; to minimize financial risk, clarify legal responsibility and uphold the University's reputation; and to enhance accountability and transparency.
- A contract which provides for the real estate owned by one party to be used and controlled on an on-going basis by another party during the term of the contract.
- Non-University Entity
- A group or individual not a part of the University, as well as University employees using University real estate for personal use and student organizations not covered by the University's liability insurance.
- University Unit
- Any campus, college, department or program of the University covered by the University's liability insurance. This includes Campus Life student organizations.
- Use Agreement
- A contract which provides for real estate owned by one party to be used by another party, typically for short term uses such as conferences and events.
- Board of Regents
- Has the exclusive authority and power to approve University real estate leases and use agreements if the present value amount to be paid by or to the University during the initial term exceeds $1,250,000.
- CFO and Vice President
- As delegated by the President, has signature authority for University real estate leases and use agreements if the present value amount to be paid by or to the University during the initial term does not exceed $1,250,000, subject to Approval Authority, Funding Approval and Legal Approval. The CFO and Vice President has redelegated this authority to the Director of Real Estate. The CFO and Vice President is the signature authority for real estate leases and use agreements approved by the Board of Regents.
- Non-University Entity
- Uses University real estate in accordance with the terms of the contracted agreement, including providing evidence of required insurance coverage.
- Office of the General Counsel
- Develops or approves all University real estate contracts.
- Has delegated authority to the Senior Vice Presidents, Vice Presidents and Chancellors, who have redelegated all or some of their authority to others, to execute leases of non-University real estate by their unit and use agreements with a present value not exceeding $1,250,000, subject to Approval Authority, Funding Approval and Legal Approval. Refer to the Delegations Library for more details.
- Real Estate Office
- Has responsibility and Approval Authority for all use agreement transactions over $10,000 (Approval Authority for use agreements not exceeding $10,000 has been delegated to the signature authority) and all lease agreement transactions. The Real Estate Office administers all leases and maintains databases of the University's real estate leases and use agreements as well as its owned real estate.
- University Unit
- Uses University owned and leased real estate for mission-related purposes and oversees use and lease agreements providing for use of building space or other real estate assigned to them by non-University entities.
- Board of Regents Policy: Reservation and Delegation of Authority
- Board of Regents Policy: Property and Facility Use
- Delegations Library
- April 2012 - $250,000 lease threshold increased to $1,250,000 to align with Board of Regents Policy: Property and Facility Use. Added language to specify certain uses by registered students organizations which do not require a written agreement.
- March 2011 - Aligns policy with current practice; Combines two existing real estate policies into one, with separate procedures; Provides greater accountability and transparency as to how space is leased; Clearly specifies who has the authority to enter into a lease or sales agreement, which in turn, reduces the University's risk of accepting an unreasonable lease.
- Using and Leasing University Real Estate, Using and Leasing Non-University Real Estate.