Planning: Change of use without express planning permission

Jason Towell discusses the government’s recent announcement that it intends to bring in permitted development rights for a change of use from offices to residential The latest proposals will clearly provide great opportunities. The chronic lack of housing being delivered by this country, which the Planning Minister, Nick Boles MP, has labelled as a grave …
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Service Charge: A warning to landlords

A recent decision has extended a landlord’s duty to consult on proposed works. David Haines and Tanya Pinto explore the implications The effect of the judgment should now result in a prudent landlord considering consulting on all qualifying works, even in circumstances where the individual works themselves will equate to less than £250 per lessee. …
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Tenants: Tread with care!

Raymond Cooper highlights the potential problems with including an indemnity covenant in a lease that provides a remedy for breach of the tenants’ own covenants In Royscott [1993], the tenant argued that the landlord should have tried to mitigate the expenses, and the Court of Appeal held that an indemnity was a debt claim and …
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Community Infrastructure Levy: A first-year review

Rob Bruce reviews the impact of the CIL to date It has been reported in the press that the Secretary of State is considering going even further than the recently published CIL Guidance and has pencilled in a consultation for early 2013 that could result in a wholesale rewrite. The first community infrastructure levies (CIL) …
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Lease Break Clauses: What could possibly go wrong?

Jon Dickins rounds up recent case law on the vexed issue of interpreting break clauses Recent cases have demonstrated that the courts will tend to side with the landlord if the tenant has not complied strictly with the wording of a break clause.Life is full of uncertainty and, in a competitive commercial property market, tenants …
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Alienation: Perhaps not so alien

Rachel Watkin assesses the practicalities of alienation provisions and AGAs in the current economic climate If the covenant strength of the proposed new tenant itself is insufficient then, provided that its covenant strength, together with that of its guarantor, is sufficient, it may be that it would be unreasonable for consent not to be given. …
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Construction Focus: Consultants under fire again?

When is a contractor under an obligation to warn of a dangerous or defective design? John Starr examines recent case law on the issue The principles governing apportionment are that the court must have particular regard to: (a) the causative potency of a relevant party’s fault; and (b) the blameworthiness of that party’s conduct relative …
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