Questions with Answers before you take a Commercial Lease (Part 2)
1. What happens if I fail to pay the rent?
You are normally evicted at very short notice within the terms of the lease, you do not have the protection of Residential Property, even though you may be living on the premises. All rents are paid in advance, normally between one month to three months, usually by standing order or direct debit.
2. What happens if I fail to pay the Business Rates?
Then local Authority will take you to court eventually, if you do not have enough money to pay they will put the Bailiffs in, who will take goods to the value of the debt with costs. They normally remove part or most of the Fixtures and Fittings (F&F), this affects the Landlord because the property within the lease conditions has to have enough (F&F) to continue trading, you cannot sell or remove the bulk of the F&F, even though you paid for them, depending on the lease wording.
3. Why do I need a Survey?
Everyone buying a commercial property, especially a lease should have a Schedule of Condition, to validate the state of condition PRIOR to the handover date. If there are outstanding wants of repair or decoration, then either the Landlord or the previous Lessee is responsible, if it is left until a later date, no action can be taken without documentary proof agreed with the Landlord or his Agent. We have had certain BDM’s who claimed that a Survey was carried out at each Lease Assignment, this was not true, the lessee had nothing in writing or a copy of the so called survey.
4. Why do I need dated photographic evidence of any survey faults?
Normally a surveyor will have dated and photographic evidence of any areas that are of concern, but you need copies agreed with the Landlord at that time. If you do not and the original surveyor is no longer available, you may have problems when the Landlord claims for dilapidations at the end of the lease or assignment.
5. Why do I need approval to carry out improvements to the property?
You must have the Landlords written approval for all alterations or improvements, otherwise he can insist that it is all put back the way it was at the start of the lease.
6. Can I sell or change the Fixtures and Fittings (F&F)?
If the property had no F&F whatsoever and you have brought them in, you can do what you like with the F&F. If the F&F are listed with the lease, you can sell or change them, because you have paid for them, but they must be replaced so that the business can continue trading. You need a legal explanation of what you can do without breaching the terms of the Lease.
7. Why do I have to pay a deposit to the Landlord and how much?
With any Lease or Tenancy, depending on the Brewer, some form of Security Deposit normally applies.
8. What is the Authorised Guarantee Agreement (AGA) and the implications for me?
This is a nasty sting in the tail, when you assign a lease, it makes you responsible for any losses incurred by the Landlord caused by the assignee for the duration of their time as lessee on your original lease. It is possible, with some Landlords to buy yourself out of the AGA, it is now being used as source of additional revenue by some and it is worth finding out how much it will cost you.
9. Do I have to use the Landlords Insurers?
With Landlords owning a lot of properties they frequently have a clause in the lease saying that you have to use their insurers, in a number of cases, in stead of being cheaper it is more expensive than doing it yourself through an independent insurance company. If you do insure the property yourself the Landlord will insist on being notified on the policy, should you fail to pay the premium, they are normally given a short period to obtain cover.
10. Does the Landlord have right of entry to the premises at any time?
It depends on the terms of the lease, though a landlords inspection is normally notified in writing. This can happen at short notice if the Landlord has reason to believe that the property is being neglected, used for questionable activities or unauthorised alterations.
11. Do I need professional Advice on a Rent Review?
You always need professional advice when you have a Rent Review, it can be a complete Minefield. It is worth putting money aside for rent or rating reviews, the costs can escalate, depending on the Landlord/Property owning Company.
Please note, access to this site is totally free if you would like to subscribe (No Charge) on www.buyingapub.com, they are free to be read for your guidance and aimed to help you get through a time of considerable pressure and demand.
copyright (©)2015, www.buyingapub.com