Sunday, September 20, 2020
Real Estate

Notice periods for commercial leases extended to help businesses during Covid-19 crisis

commercial tenants

Previously, commercial tenants served with a warning letter for non-payment of rent would have 14 days to pay outstanding rent, which has now been increased to 14 weeks

The notice period before a commercial lease can be terminated for non-payment of rent has been extended.

This new measure is a way to help businesses during the coronavirus pandemic.

Minister for Public Finance Ben Macpherson has written to business leaders to promote new powers in the Coronavirus Act, which was passed unanimously by the Scottish Parliament last week.

Previously commercial tenants served with a warning letter for non-payment of rent would have 14 days to pay outstanding rent.

This period has now been increased to 14 weeks. It applies to all commercial property leases, including those where a warning notice has already been issued and has not already expired.

Mr Macpherson said: This new emergency measure is designed to support commercial tenants, who may be facing financial difficulties out with their control during these extraordinary times.

Many businesses are experiencing a sudden drop in income and this part of the new Act will help them to reduce costs and prioritise maintaining jobs and productive capacity. It will help commercial tenants to focus on assisting their employees, and retain the ability to resume productivity and pay rents again as normal once this crisis has passed, he said.

Head of UK Government Relations and City Strategy at the Royal Institution of Chartered Surveyors (RICS) Hew Edgar said: RICS welcomes the Minister’s advice that landlords and tenants should seek advice from professionals who can assist in the navigation of the amended business rates regime, how to access recently established grants and loans on offer, as well as assist parties who want to introduce temporary payment measures to seek compromise.

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