Commercial Property and the Coronavirus

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The Government announced on Monday that Commercial tenants who cannot pay their rent because of the coronavirus will be protected from eviction if they miss payments in the next three months.

Tenants will still be liable for any rent due, increasing the likelihood of requests for rent reduction, suspension or payment plans. Both landlords and tenants are being advised to take early legal advice before agreeing any changes in rent or the terms to avoid disputes in the future.

It is worth noting that a tenant cannot bring a commercial lease to an end as a result of the coronavirus, this can only be done by:

  • Exercising a break clause if the lease contains one
  • Negotiating a Surrender of the lease agreed by both parties
  • Serving Notice – if the term of the lease has expired and the tenant is holding over

Richard Farnworth, Director at Farnworth Rose commented:

“Whilst the landscape is changing rapidly and we’ve seen some unprecedented actions by the Government in the last two weeks, both landlords and tenants are still bound by the terms of their leases. They must be careful not to agree anything now without professional advice.”

For advice on any commercial property matters please call 01282 695400.