YogaSoul Center has been open for more than five years in the Eagan Professional Building. But the business owners are unexpectedly being forced to pack up and move at the end of April, and they aren't at all happy with how it went down.
Owners Tarisa Parrish and Susan Kulbitski say they signed a nine-month lease in December. The idea was to stay where they were at through the summer while looking for a bigger space to move into in the fall. But late last month, out of nowhere, they were approached by the building owners about signing a new, higher-rent, seven-year lease.
At first, Parrish and Kulbitski were bewildered.
"I thought, 'Do you mean a seven-year lease after this one is through?'" Parrish told us. "But they told us, 'We're not going to honor the one you signed.'"
Turns out the owners of the building -- dentist Paul Becker and Greg Preusse, president of Wenzel Heating & Air Conditioning -- hadn't actually signed the lease emailed to them by Parrish and Kulbitski. So when the YogaSoul owners balked at the new demands, they were told they'd have to pack up and leave by the end of April, as a new tenant had already agreed to move into their space in May.
Messages left with Becker and Preusse asking them to share their side of the story weren't returned.
Parrish and Kulbitski still hope to find a bigger space for YogaSoul, but the new timeframe they're confronted with is obviously a huge complication.
"To do a move and build-out first you have to find a space, then you have to get a contractor, draw up plans, get permits approved -- that itself takes at least two weeks -- before you can start construction," Parrish said. "To do that in 60 days is unreasonable."
As a result, if Becker and Preusse expect Parrish and Kulbitski to leave the Eagan Professional Building quietly, it sounds like they have another thing coming.
"Quite honestly, I am not planning on closing my doors at the end of April," Parrish said. "I think they are out of integrity and don't have a legal leg to stand on and if I have to stay an extra two weeks, try to evict me."
"I signed a lease, I pay rent every month, and I've never done anything wrong ever in over five years of running my business," Parrish continued. "To be suddenly put in a position that requires a great deal of capital is not part of our usual day-to-day operational plans. Service-based companies like ours do not have access to that kind of capital."
Parrish added that not everyone has been empathetic about YogaSoul's plight.
"Our community of students have been rallying to help support our move, [but] we are also getting emails from people who are super critical of us and our situation, saying business is business [and] shame on us if we can't handle it," she said. "That's hurtful, but I understand everyone has their own opinion which is usually limited by their own frame of reference and lack of knowledge of the facts."