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Clothes Shop Leases – Tenant Tips - By Chris Bartlett

Over the years, I’ve advised many a tenant looking to take on shop leases. So, I’ve decided to put together some pointers that I’ve found are of special importance to clothes shop leases.

Make sure you consider them carefully before you sign on the dotted line.

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  • Planning Consent – Change of Use
  • Trading Hours
  • Service Charges
  • Security at the End of the Lease
The Council strictly police the use to which all buildings are put. You must therefore make sure that you are allowed to use the property you’re looking to rent as a clothes shop. This means that you’ll probably need A1 planning consent, which is use as a retail shop. You should be able to find out some useful information on the current permitted use by getting in touch with the Local Authority’s planning department and/or asking the Landlord.
Tenants of clothes shops often find themselves renting a unit in a development or mall. If so, pay close attention to the hours and days during which you are allowed to trade, both in the lease and under any ‘regulations’ that the Landlord might produce from time to time. If you’re planning to stay open for late night or weekend shopping, you don’t want to find that the shopping centre is locked up at those times and on those days. Check carefully the terms of any planning permission issued by the Council, too. You may find that additional restrictions on trading hours are imposed therein.
If you are planning on taking a lease of part of a building or a unit in a development, always go over the service charge provisions with a toothcomb. In particular, make sure that the Landlord can’t charge you for things you should not be paying for, such as funding a new development or paying for staff and services that you don’t benefit from. Above all, it’s crucial to get the Landlord to agree to cap your service charges, so that you know that, at worst you can’t be asked to pay more than a fixed amount in any one year of the lease term.
What if you want to stay on at the Property after the lease of your clothes shop comes to an end? You might well not want the Landlord to be able to evict you on a whim. It can take years to build up a following at a particular location, so the last thing you might want is for the Landlord to get rid of you. You can reduce the chances of this happening by making sure that you are granted a lease that is protected under the provisions of the Landlord and Tenant Act 1954.

Call Chris today on 0151 227 3391. He is an experienced shop lease solicitor. He offers a free no obligation quote for your clothes shop lease!

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Contact James Edwards for a free no obligation quotation today by phone or via our contact form. James is a commercial property solicitor advising landlords and tenants on commercial leases.

James also has experience in buying and selling commercial property. He is friendly and very approachable. James works with Christopher Bartlett, who is an experienced commercial property solicitor working on large development projects.

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