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Commercial property evictions: ban may be extended

Commercial property evictions – is a further extension on the way?

Businesses struggling to survive these turbulent times, may be thrown another lifeline by the government.

Tenants of commercial property, such as restaurants and shops have benefited from an eviction ban since April, making it illegal for them to be evicted for not paying rent. That ban is due to come to an end on 30 September.

However, the government is reported to be planning to extend the ban until the end of the year, giving tenants a few more months protection.

As the high street struggles to recover, the government is coming under increasing pressure to offer businesses more support, or risk surging unemployment figures as businesses fold.

Businesses in towns and city centres have not seen the much-needed increase in footfall since the lockdown lifted; people have been reluctant to return to their high street shops or office desks.

The extension will come as a welcome relief to tenants but will be a hard blow for some landlords, many of whom are facing financial difficulty themselves after seeing a huge fall in rent revenue.

It also has the potential to impact investors who will be less likely to want to pour their cash into the UK property market.

There are also concerns that many businesses who have the finances available to pay their rent have been wrongly using the scheme to avoid paying.

Sarah Naylor, partner and head of commercial and property, commented: “Some landlords were able to agree rent holiday’s with their tenants, but many other tenants face the prospect of having to repay all the outstanding rent when the ban comes to an end. I would urge landlords and tenants to try to find workable solutions.

“Whether you are a landlord or a tenant, if you need legal support either with your business operations, staffing issues or repayment terms, it is crucial that you act quickly.”

According to the Financial Times, the ban could come within the next few days, just in time for the next quarter rent bill which falls due at the end of September.

If you are affected by the commercial property evictions ban and would like to arrange an appointment with our business or employment experts, please call 01302 320621 or email info@athertongodfrey.co.uk 

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