When entering into a lease of commercial property it is important to have the repairing obligations of each party clearly outlined within the lease. This provides certainty to both the landlord and tenant, reduces any potential conflict between them as to whose responsibility repairs are and ensures that the property will not fall into a state of disrepair if neither party are willing to accept responsibility for the repairing obligations.
Generally, both parties to a commercial lease will want the property to be in a good state of repair. The Landlord wants to ensure that their property is in good condition and the tenant will want the same for the property that they are occupying and operating out of. However, certain repairs may be costly and can, therefore, lead to conflict between the parties when the repairing obligations are not clearly set out.
We advise that a schedule of condition is used to ensure that the tenant will be responsible for maintaining the property to the standard shown within it. This will ensure that the tenant will not be required to keep the property in good condition, but not require them to make substantial improvements to improve the property so that it is in pristine condition. This is especially important when considering commercial property such as a warehouse or a unit in an industrial estate, which may not always be squeaky clean when a tenant moves in. A lease can also include clauses to ensure that any repair obligations are reasonable and proportionate; this can be particularly essential where the tenant is only leasing part of the property.
Where a schedule of condition is used a landlord can be sure that the condition of a property will not be depreciating further than the general wear and tear to be expected with age. Landlords can also be confident that their property is not being allowed to fall into disrepair as a lease can provide rights of entry for the landlord to inspect the property. If a landlord discovered that the tenant has not fulfilled their obligation, then they can make those repairs at the cost of the tenant.
Get in touch with a solicitor to ensure that you get complete advice on your repairing obligations by contacting our commercial property department on 01302 965250.