FAQs: Commercial conveyancing issues
What does commercial conveyancing cover?
Commercial conveyancing covers a wide range of services, offered by qualified solicitors, relating to business property. For example, this type of conveyancing can cover the sale or purchase of freehold business premises or, more usually, the transfer of existing leases or the drafting of new leasing arrangements. Commercial conveyancing solicitors can also offer advice on the sale of business assets, commercial mortgages and the termination of leases.
What is the Code for Leasing Business Premises?
The Code is a result of consultation between commercial property professionals, and industry bodies representing owners (landlords) and occupiers (tenants). Thus, it is endorsed by the Law Society, the Association of British Insurers, the Confederation of British Industry and the Federation of Small Businesses. The Code promotes awareness of fair deals under the law for owners and occupiers. The Code is voluntary, so Code-compliant leases are not obligatory. Consequently, tenants should seek the advice of a specialist solicitor when negotiating a commercial lease.
What are the main issues for occupiers?
Transactions involving leases are more complicated than those involving freehold commercial property. As the lease is drafted by the landlord’s legal representative, a tenant can ask their own legal adviser to check its terms for unusual clauses or areas of ambiguity. Types of clauses which may cause future problems otherwise could include:
- Rent reviews
- Service charges and break clauses
If an owner breaks his obligations under the lease, an occupier should obtain legal advice.
What are the main issues for owners?
The lease should include clauses relating to matters such as :
- Length of the occupancy and break rights
- Security of tenure
- Rent reviews
- Rights to sublet
- Upkeep obligations
Landlords of commercial properties may face significant issues if their tenants do not pay their rent or otherwise break the terms of the lease. Substantial sums of money could be involved, and the professional advice of a specialist commercial solicitor is recommended in such circumstances.
How can I choose a commercial conveyancing solicitor?
If you wish to consult a dedicated solicitor, the Conveyancing and Land Law Committee of the Law Society consists of legal professionals specialising in conveyancing and land law. The Committee also interacts with other bodies interested in business conveyancing, such as the Council of Mortgage Lenders and the Land Registry. Contact Law can put you in touch with a local specialist commercial conveyancing Solicitor free of charge.
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