Some business tenants may not realise that Landlord’s consent is normally required to carry out alterations to their commercial premises, especially if structural changes are involved, such as taking out a load-bearing wall, adding additional accommodation within the shell or altering drainage arrangements.
In addition, any alterations that are regarded as an improvement could add to the future rental value of the Premises and, if carried out without Landlord’s consent, could mean that such works are rentalised by the Landlord at the next rent review. That would be a disaster for the Tenant who has paid for the improvements in the first place.
So it is always best to play on the safe side and inform the Landlord in advance of any work proposed and seek their consent.
Business tenants should also be aware that tenant alterations, even when done with Landlord’s consent, are items that the Landlord is normally within their rights to have reinstated to the original layout at the end of the lease as part of the dilapidations. In practice, some Landlords will take a pragmatic view on this and not require reinstatement due to the alteration enhancing the prospects of attracting a new occupier.
Andrew Idle Associates act for Business Tenants in relation to dilapidations and for Landlords in the management of their commercial property assets. We bring many years of hands-on experience to these areas of work.