Long leases for London’s tenants

Sadiq Khan leads the way with long leases for London's tenants looking to get on the shared ownership property ladder. Affordable Housing Programme The Mayor of London, Sadiq Khan, has outlined plans to sell shared ownership homes delivered as part of his new Affordable Housing Programme with long leases for London's tenants on a standard 999-year lease term. Sadiq is determined that London leads by example and sets the benchmark for higher standards for leaseholders across the UK.  The new expectation, which was set out in a letter written by…

Review of commercial landlord and tenant legislation to be launched

Communities Secretary Robert Jenrick announced in December 2020 a review of the outdated commercial landlord and tenant legislation will be launched in early 2021, to address concerns that the current framework does not reflect the current economic conditions. This review will consider how to enable better collaboration between commercial landlords and tenants and also how to improve the leasing process to ensure our high streets and town centres thrive as we recover from the pandemic and beyond. The review of commercial landlord and tenant legislation will be launched this year…

Landlords must gear up for new safety checks 

Residential landlords must get their house in order with the arrival of further legislation to protect tenants through electrical and building safety requirements. New electrical safety standards are rolling out for private sector tenancies and the other upcoming challenge for residential landlords is fire safety compliance for building structures.  Both safety aspects have been accelerated following tragic outcomes.  Electricity causes about half of the UK’s 37,000 house fires a year, according to the charity Electrical Safety First, and faulty electrics cause some 70 deaths and 350,000 injuries each year in…

Retail tenants should check the small print

As a fresh wave of lockdown measures cut across the UK, retail tenants may be experiencing new concerns about how to pay the rent, but another ticking timebomb is the viability of their landlords. Even before the pandemic, the high street was undergoing radical change and the continuing restrictions have seen a dramatic shift in consumer habits towards online shopping. Faced with such a shift towards e-commerce, few were surprised to see the recent demise of Intu, a large retail landlord with shopping centres that include the Trafford Centre in…

Property boom as home and overseas buyers rush to beat the deadline 

Property buyers are fighting off the pandemic to catch a new home before stamp duty goes back to its normal rate.  For overseas buyers, the race is even more important, as the rate will carry an additional surcharge for them from April. As part of the range of measures to provide economic support through the Covid-19 pandemic, the Government introduced a temporary holiday for Stamp Duty Land Tax (SDLT) on the first £500,000 of purchases, but this will come to an end on 31 March 2021, when it will revert…

Lockdown 2 and home improvements: When do you need planning permission?

With recent announcements from both the UK and Scottish government about further lockdown restrictions, you might be planning to fill your time with some home improvements. At the time of writing, tradespeople are exempt from lockdown restrictions and may enter your home to carry out necessary repairs. However, you should be aware that certain modifications to your home and garden may require specific permissions. In this article, we look at where you can find the information you need and provide a brief guide to when you may and may not…

High Court – implications of lease terms when giving up a lease

In a case at the High Court on the 23rd September 2020, the High Court examined how a clause in the lease about returning the property to the landlord at the end of the lease applied where asbestos was left buried across the site at the end of a lease. The tenant had appointed consultants to remove buildings from the site. The consultants' works in dismantling the buildings had disturbed asbestos-containing materials and spread them across the site. As with all such matters, the facts of the case were critical,…

FCA consults on additional guidance for mortgage providers in COVID-19

The Financial Conduct Authority (FCA) has announced proposals to ensure that firms provide tailored support to mortgage borrowers who continue to face payment difficulties due to coronavirus. The FCA has published a guidance consultation setting out further information for mortgage providers and COVID-19 affected borrowers. The FCA's proposals aim to support mortgage borrowers who have taken up payment deferrals and who continue to face financial difficulties. The proposals will also help those whose financial situation may now be affected by COVID-19 post lockdown. The draft (in consultation until 1 September)…

CLC guidance on the use of face coverings in construction

The Construction Leadership Council (CLC) has published its latest guidance, The Use of Face Coverings in Construction during Coronavirus (COVID-19). The key points to note: That while the use of face coverings is mandatory for a number of public places, the government's guidance on construction and other outdoor work does not require face coverings for COVID! Unless there are suspected cased of COVID. Normal PPE is to be used where required but this is not as an extra for COVID. In the guidance, there is an explanation of face coverings…

Renewing a commercial lease – what can be negotiated?

Most lease renewals are governed by the Landlord and Tenant Act 1954, and the rules can be complicated and confusing. However, if your commercial lease is up for renewal, you want to ensure you get the most favourable terms for your business. In this post, we look at the key things to negotiate when renewing a commercial lease to help you understand what terms you might be able to change. How do I renew a commercial lease? If you would like to renew the lease on your commercial property, you…

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