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Making alterations to commercial premises can be a complex and daunting process. As Chartered Surveyors, we’re here to help guide you through the process and ensure everything is done to the highest standard. Here we look at some of the main factors you need to consider.
Restrictions in Leases
The first thing you need to be aware of is any restrictions in the lease on the property you are looking to make alterations to. You should check the lease for any restrictions on alterations and the landlord’s consent requirements. Even if the lease states that the tenant can make alterations without the landlord’s consent, it’s a good idea to inform the landlord of your plans to ensure that they are aware of the changes you are making – a Licence to Alter is usually required.
You should pay special attention to the clauses in the lease relating to dilapidations. In some cases where amendments to a property’s layout are made, the property will need to be returned to its original state when the tenant exits, unless an agreement is made in writing to state otherwise. Any returns to the original layout would need to be completed at the tenant’s own cost, so it is worth being sure before beginning any works.
Once you have established what restrictions you need to adhere to, you can start to plan the alterations effectively. You may need to engage the services of a professional Surveyor or structural engineer, depending on the type of alterations you are making. You should also create a timeline so you know when each stage of the alterations needs to be completed.
If employees are in situ in the property, you will need to consider how they will continue to work whilst the alterations are underway. Temporary working arrangements may need to be made during certain stages of the work.
It may be worth considering employing a Project Manager to help plan and oversee the works. Lea Hough are able to undertake this role, ensuring that works are not only undertaken with minimal disruption to existing staff and business operations, but also that the works stay on track and are completed to a high standard.
Other factors to be aware of
There are a number of other factors you may need to be aware of, such as ensuring that any works comply with Building Regulations and any other relevant legislation. You should also check if you need to obtain Planning Permission for the alterations you are making, as this can be a lengthy and complicated process.
Finally, you need to be very mindful of the cost of the alterations and ensure that you are budgeting for any unforeseen costs. In the current climate where the cost of building materials is ever-increasing, it is key to obtain up to date cost information to allow for accurate budgeting.
Lea Hough’s commercial property team have a wealth of experience in helping clients make alterations to commercial premises. We can ensure that all regulations are adhered to and that the alterations are completed to the highest standard.
If you have any questions or would like to discuss making alterations to your commercial premises, please get in touch.
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