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Commercial Property

Dealing with property for your business usually involves a significant investment in both time and money. We can offer expert guidance on the best way to protect your investment and minimise risk.

We handle every aspect of commercial property law for clients, from small businesses to medium-sized local and large regional companies.

We help landlords, tenants, developers, investors and owner occupiers buyers to avoid potential pitfalls involved in property transactions.

Our commercial property lawyers’ expertise, quality of service and speed of delivery have helped Crane & Staples gain an excellent reputation in this area.

We ensure matters are handled smoothly and efficiently and that we help you achieve your objectives on time.

The complexity of the law relating to property means that few companies are likely to possess the necessary experience and expertise in house, and we can work as an extension to your team to provide that legal expertise.

Commercial Landlords

As a landlord you will have invested a significant sum in your property. In order to protect this investment, it is important to take care when granting leases to occupiers.

Ensuring that all-important matters are covered at the outset will avoid disputes and maximise the return from the property.

Things to consider may include:-

  • If there are common parts, shared entrances or roadways it is important to consider who is responsible for repairing and contributing to maintenance.
  • If you wish to consider incorporating a rent review provision then it is important to consider the mechanism for review.
  • Do you want to restrict or control the use of the premises by the tenant and the ability of the tenant to make change or alterations to the property?
  • Are you prepared to give the tenant the right to renew the lease when the lease term comes to an end?
  • If you are to maintain the buildings insurance are you expecting the tenant to reimburse the premium?
  • We have expertise in dealing with all types of commercial lease documents and can advise you on the best way of achieving your aim. We also work closely with your appointed surveyor or agent to ensure that the letting process runs as smoothly as possible.

We are happy to provide an initial no-obligation discussion and therefore should you require any more information please get in touch.

Commercial Tenants

Taking on a commercial lease can be a daunting prospect for anyone who is not familiar with the process.

We can advise you on the legal and commercial aspects of the transaction and offer expert guidance so that you know exactly what you are signing.

Things to consider may include:-

  • Who is to be responsible for the repair of the property, particularly if the property is not in a good state of repair at the outset.
  • Are there any service charges or other payments on top of the rent and who is responsible for other outgoings such as business rates?
  • Do you wish to have the flexibility to bring the lease to an end before the full term and if so on what terms?
  • Are you being asked to sign any guarantees or give any security for the rental payments?
  • Does the building have planning consent for your proposed use?
  • Are you being offered a right to renew the lease when the term expires?
  • Does the landlord charge VAT on the rent?
  • Is there any liability to Stamp Duty Land Tax on the rental payments?
  • Is it necessary to notify the Land Registry and register your title to the lease?

We have expertise in dealing with all types of leases for tenants and can guide you through the process and explain all important aspects so that you can be confident you understand your legal obligations.

We are happy to provide an initial no-obligation discussion and therefore should you require any more information please get in touch.

Developers

Whether a site is brownfield and has buildings on it already or is greenfield, many legal issues can become relevant when you are looking at re-development.

It is important to deal with any issues at the outset so that there are no delays in the project at a future date.

Our approach is to work with our clients to find cost effective solutions to any problems which arise and to work as part of the client’s team.

Things to consider may include:

  • Does the property have adequate access and all other rights necessary for the proposed re-development?
  • Are there any restrictive covenants which would prevent or restrict using or building on the property?
  • Do the boundaries on the title deeds match up with the layout of the property on the ground?
  • Are there any areas adjacent to the property owned by a third party which could impede or prevent the re-development?
  • Are the roadways adjacent to the property adopted and maintained by the local authority so that there are adequate rights of way?

We have the expertise to deal with the process from start to finish from site acquisition, assisting with planning agreements with the local authority and the eventual sale or letting of the completed development.

Our expertise includes option agreements and conditional contracts subject to planning consent, overage agreements whereby an additional payment may be due to a previous owner, planning agreements under Section 106 of the Town & Country Planning Act, deeds of easement, title investigation and restrictive covenants.

We are happy to provide an initial no-obligation discussion and therefore should you require any more information please contact us.

Investors

Whether you are an experienced property investor or just starting out, we recognise that investing in property is a significant outlay.

Aside from the physical building, there are a number of matters which can affect the value of a property investment. Typically commercial property is purchased with tenants already in place so it is important to look closely at the terms of the lease or leases to ensure there is nothing adverse which would detract from the investment.

Unlike residential property, commercial property may be subject to VAT. It is important to look at the tax treatment on a sale or purchase to ensure it is dealt with fully. Things to consider may include:

  • If the property is elected for VAT it may be possible to claim relief under the Transfer of Going Concern rules.
  • Are there any capital allowances available regarding plant and machinery?
  • Do the leases contain any break options on the part of the tenants and if so on what terms?
  • Are the leases on fully repairing or insuring terms? If not there could be a shortfall in the rental income?
  • Are there any rent deposits, bonds or guarantees which you may want transferred to you on completion of the purchase?
  • Do the leases provide for a review of the rent and if so on what terms? Are the rent reviews upwards only?
  • Do the tenants have security of tenure and a right to renew the lease when it expires?

We have expertise in dealing with both sales and purchases of commercial property, advising regarding VAT and if necessary dealing with the option to tax, reviewing and advising on the terms of the leases, dealing with the tax return for Stamp Duty Land Tax and investigating the title to the property to ensure that a marketable investment is obtained.

We are happy to provide an initial no-obligation discussion and therefore should you require any more information please contact us.

Owner Occupiers

We recognise that purchasing a commercial property is a significant investment for your business.

You may not be familiar with purchasing commercial buildings and if this is the case, we can guide you through the process and if necessary refer you to other professional advisors such as surveyors or tax accountants.

Things to consider may include:

  • If the building is elected for VAT, is your business VAT registered?
  • Does the property have planning consent for your proposed use?
  • Has an asbestos report been prepared and have any issues been considered?
  • Do any adjoining owners have any rights of way which may impede your proposals for the property?
  • If the building is newly built are there any guarantees from the builder or professional team?

We have expertise in dealing with sales and purchases of commercial buildings for both companies and pension schemes. We can offer a service which is tailored to your specific needs. We are on the panel of most major lenders so if you are borrowing in order to acquire the property we can also act for and report to your lender and deal with their requirements.

We are happy to provide an initial no-obligation discussion and therefore should you require any more information please contact us.

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