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Thomas, Lawyer
Category: UK Law
Satisfied Customers: 7609
Experience:  BA (Hons), PgDip, Practising Solicitor
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Can you help me with regards XXXXX XXXXX on a lease. The background

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Can you help me with regards XXXXX XXXXX on a lease. The background is that the lease is at present with another party and has 30 months to go. The current lessee wants to finish the lease early and I would like to take it on. I have spoken to the lessor in confidence re taking on this lease. What position should I adopt? I know that the lessor has a right to be paid for the remainder of the lease but also has a duty to try to mitigate the loss but am not sure what the legal position is - do I take on the remainder of the lease or should there be a new lease?
Thanks for your question.
To enable me to answer your question could you please respond to the following using the same numbering:-
1. Are you otherwise happy with the terms or the current lease (eg. term, remaining rent, rent review, break clauses etc)
2. Do you know if the current lease is excluded from the Landlord and Tenant Act 1954 and therefore does not have an automatic right of renewal
3. Or would you prefer to negotiate new terms with the landlord for a new lease to you

Kind regards.

Customer: replied 5 years ago.

My responses:


1. I have not seen a copy of the lease yet, this is on its way from the agent.


2. I don't know but can find out.


3. Am not sure, there has been some talk of assigning the current lease. What does this mean? What would be the benefits and pitfalls of this, or would it be better to negotiate a new lease?


I am not sure if this is very helpful!


Thanks for your reply.

Were you to purchase the remaining term of the lease from the current tenant then this would be an “Assignment”. You need to check the lease to ensure that the lease can be assigned. Most commercial leases permit assignment subject to the consent of the landlord and other conditions (eg. guarantor if company, reference etc).

If you are happy with the terms of the current lease then you can have the current tenant assign it to you subject to the requirements of the actual assignment clause in the lease (see above). You need to see if the lease is excluded from the landlord and tenant act 1954. It will say if it is and a copy of the statutory declaration executed by the tenant giving effect to this should be attached.

If it has been excluded then you will have no right at the end of the term to apply to court for a new lease. In these circumstances if you could not negotiate privately with the landlord for a new lease then they could evict you.

If you would prefer to be granted a new lease on terms that you negotiate with the landlord then you can do a surrender of lease (by the current tenant) and a grant of lease (from landlord to you) simultaneously.

In either case you would have to negotiate what the current tenant’s price for the transaction would be. If they are desperate to get out then they may not charge a fee. I would expect the lease to state that the tenant would be responsible the pay the landlord’s legal fees for an assignment. If the current tenant is not willing to pay for this then you may have to offer to pay.

The landlord’s legal fees for a grant of a new lease would be roughly double that of an assignment so if you opt for this way forward then you would have to either pay this yourself or seek some arrangement with the current tenant on the amount you each pay.

Either way I would instruct a solicitor to act on your behalf to ensure that the lease is registered in your name upon completion of the transaction.
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Kind regards,

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