The term 'dilapidations' refers to breaches of lease covenants that relate to the condition of the property, and the process of remedying those breaches.
Dilapidations disputes can end in Court so it is important that as a tenant you protect your position when entering into a new business lease, in the event that your landlord commences proceedings.
If you are vacating the premises at the end of the contractual term or when exercising a break notice, you should ensure you have complied with all your obligations under your Lease and yield up the premises in the appropriate condition. You should consider any licences for alterations and whether your landlord requires them to reinstate the alterations that have been made. If the dilapidations works are not completed before the end of the lease term, then the landlord can claim damages from you to recompense them for your breach of covenant and the cost of those works, including compensation for loss of rent and service charges.
In this situation, your landlord will usually serve you with a Schedule of Dilapidations and a Quantified Demand. Your landlord will likely endorse the Schedule to confirm that it is reasonable and reflects their intentions for the building. You should respond to the Schedule of Dilapidations and/or Quantified Demand within about 56 days of receipt. The Court’s Dilapidations Protocol states that both you and your landlord should consider alternative dispute resolution (ADR) in dilapidations cases.
If proceedings are issued, you may be advised to make offers to settle at various stages and should consider such advice carefully. Early advice should be obtained from a solicitor and surveyor, and this is an area we can advise you on.
For further information or f you wish to obtain advice about a claim or defend a claim being brought against land you own please contact our expert Kevin Richardson on 02392 660261 or firstname.lastname@example.org