The last 18 months has felt like a bit of a vacuum for tenants of commercial properties who have been working from home. When planning a return to the office, those in charge of facilities would be well advised to take some time to dust down their lease and consider some of the following:-

  • Do you know where your lease document is? Perhaps your solicitor is holding this? Locate a copy and make sure it’s the final, signed version.
  • Check your dates. Diarise the expiry date for your lease along with any break dates and notice periods. The end of your lease might feel a lot closer than it felt in March 2020!
  • Remember that even if the lease doesn't mention it, you may need to give prior notice in writing before the expiry date if you intend to vacate.
  • Plan ahead and start the dialogue early with your landlord if you are considering extending a lease or moving on. If your premises are still "fit for purpose", your landlord might offer incentives for you to stay.
  • What statutory obligations do you have as tenant and are these all up to date? Think fire extinguishers, legionella, asbestos etc. Consider getting any service systems properly serviced and tested before staff are back in the office.
  • Are your insurances up to date? Your landlord probably insures the building but what about contents, office vehicles etc?
  • If you are unsure, take advice – from property agents and your solicitor.

If you have any queries or would like more information, please speak to Tracey Menzies or your usual Brodies contact.