Law and best practice; commercial and residential; solving problems and avoiding pitfalls

May 2020, London


One: freeholders (and intermediary landlords for that matter) want to generate income from ownership of their properties, net of the costs of ownership. Two: the costs of ownership and occupation can be substantial. Three: there is no right to recover these costs from occupiers unless there is an agreement obligating occupiers to pay. Four: in multi-occupied buildings it will be necessary to apportion costs between occupiers (and some space may, at any given time, be vacant). Five: some substantial cost may occur only infrequently – we must be fair between present and future tenants. Six: owners may not own the property for ever – what should we do about that possibility? Seven: the law is not silent on the rights and duties of landlords and tenants - and there are codes of practice to take into account.

In short: there are multiple ways to mess-up, both when drafting leases and in day to day management. This course is designed to ensure that you don’t. On completion of this one day course you should know what to do, when, why and how. You will be equipped to avoid the all too many pitfalls waiting for the unwary.

Topics include:

  • The aims of landlords and tenants; the inherent conflicts
  • Different types of service charge
  • Management costs
  • Budgets, auditing and certificates
  • The concept of 'reasonableness'
  • Commonhold and Leasehold Reform Act 2002 and the attendant Regulations
  • Potential legislative changes
  • Common shortcomings in leases
  • Drafting suitable lease provisions
  • Liability of assignors and assignees when leases change hands
  • Apportioning the costs of unevenly shared services
  • Solving the most common problems
  • Benchmarking and tenant satisfaction
  • RICS Commercial Service Charge Code
  • RICS Residential Service Charge Code
  • Mixed use buildings
  • Handling sinking funds
  • Cost implications versus lease terms
  • Green issues

An in-depth briefing designed for property managers, residents' companies and lawyers responsible for drafting and negotiating leases.