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Commercial Property

Dealing in commercial property is a complex business and a serious financial commitment.

Whether you own the local corner shop or a large-scale development, we will work in partnership with you, giving you the expert advice and assurance you need, so you can get on with running your business.

Our commercial property team is recommended as a top tier regional firm in legal industry guide The Legal 500.  It is one of the largest in the region, with clients including quoted companies, national organisations and property developers as well as individual property investors.

Every company’s needs are different, so we don’t offer a one-size-fits-all solution. We work with you to understand your objectives. And because we understand time is money and deadlines are critical – we deal with matters quickly and efficiently, without compromising standards.

Contact a member of our team today to discuss any commercial property issue, including:

  • Articles & News
  • FAQs
  • Legal Glossary

I am assigning a lease and have been told I will have to give an AGA – what is this?
When a tenant is assigning their lease, the landlord can ask the tenant to guarantee the new tenant's performance of the obligations contained in the lease. The outgoing tenant may be required to enter into an 'Authorised Guarantee Agreement' or AGA, and this may be necessary to gain the Landlord’s consent to assign the lease. Tenants should be aware that by giving an AGA they will be guaranteeing that the new tenant performs the covenants and obligations contained in the lease - including the obligation to pay rent.

I am buying a commercial property – will I need to pay Stamp Duty Land Tax?
The rate of Stamp Duty Land Tax (SDLT) payable will depend upon the purchase price, whether VAT is payable on the purchase price and whether any SDLT relief can be claimed. SDLT will be calculated not only on the purchase price but also on the amount of VAT payable on the purchase price. It should also be noted that SDLT can be payable by a Tenant on the grant of a lease depending upon how long the lease is granted for and the annual rent payable. At present, the SDLT rates on non-residential or mixed use property or land are: Up to £150,000 - 0% Over £150,000 to £250,000 - 1% Over £250,000 to £500,000 - 3% Over £500,000 - 4%

I am looking to buy a commercial property. What searches will I need?
It is up to the buyer to find out as much about the property as possible. This can be achieved by asking the seller to reply to pre-contract enquiries. You should also undertake searches designed to reveal information that the seller may not provide; these include Local, Drainage and Environmental Searches, to name but a few. In addition it is recommend that the property is surveyed, and the survey should reveal any physical defects in the property. However, 'caveat emptor' applies...so buyer beware!

I am renting a commercial property and my tenant is defaulting on their rent payments. What can I do?
Firstly, consider whether you want to reclaim the property or just receive payment for the outstanding rent. Also bear in mind the means of your tenant to actually pay the outstanding arrears, as this may affect your strategy. The first thing to do is check your tenancy agreement, as this will help assess the options available, and it may be that your lease contains a forfeiture provision. Even if there is no forfeiture provision, there are various options; you may be able to issue proceedings against your tenant for payment of rent arrears or possession of your property, issue a statutory demand or pursue undertenants or guarantors for the debt.

I have often heard the term “dilapidations” referred to in relation to commercial leases, what does this mean?
Dilapidations is a general term used to describe items of disrepair, most often used in reference to matters covered by the tenant's obligations contained within a lease to repair a property. The term is often seen in the context of the repair works which a tenant is required to complete at the end of a lease, in order to bring the property up to the standard required when returning the property to the landlord. Parties to a lease need to carefully consider potential dilapidations liabilities before completing a lease.

I intend to sell or let out a commercial property, do I need to obtain an Energy Performance Certificate?
An Energy Performance Certificate (EPC) is required in almost all cases where a commercial property is being sold or let and should be obtained prior to the property being offered for sale or to let. There are some very limited exceptions where an EPC is not required (e.g. places of worship) and if in any doubt you should discuss the EPC requirements with your agent or legal adviser as soon as possible.

  • Andrew Ferguson
    Commercial Property
  • David Bailey
    Commercial Property Litigation
  • David Hill
    Commercial Property
  • Deborah Turner
    Commercial Property
  • Heather Keighley
    Commercial Property
  • James Allison
    Head of Real Estate Division
  • James Stocker
    Commercial Property
  • John Lomax
    Commercial Property
  • Jonie Little
    Commercial Property
  • Kate Mallaband
    Commercial Property
  • Lara Watts
    Commercial Property
  • Marc Appleton
    Commercial Property
  • Martin Beardsworth
    Commercial Property
  • Martin Long
    Commercial Property
  • Matthew Parr
    Commercial Property
  • Nicola Ciraolo
    Commercial Property
  • Paul Hardy
    Commercial Property
  • Scott Bennett
    Commercial Property
  • Sophie Coane
    Commercial Property
  • Stephanie Gray (nee Marshall)
    Commercial Property
  • Stephen Bell
    Commercial Property
  • Stephen Betts
    Tax Specialist
  • Tom Dickinson
    Commercial Property
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