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A new lease, freely available, is due to be launched by the Royal Institute of Chartered Surveyors in conjunction with the British Retail Consortium. The lease is specifically designed to benefit small retail businesses on the high street. The lease will be launched in the New Year and aims to make the leasing process between small business tenants and landlords simpler.

The contract will be clearly set out and simple to use, so that both parties will understand the agreement. During the negotiation of a lease, wrong decisions can be disastrous for a small business. RICS has worked with the results of the Land and Society Commission to deliver plans of the government for localism. Fairer terms will be included in leases for these businesses.

The lease is aimed at small retail businesses on the high street, providing a short term contract with no clause for a break or rent review. Start-ups and small businesses will have stable property costs and flexible terms for tenants in the lease. Currently, the negotiation process for a contract can take a number of weeks, but the new lease will speed up the process. Clarity and stability when referring to property costs will prove advantageous when applying for business finance.

Tom Ironside, director of business for British Retail Consortium said:

“Clearly taking on property is one area which can be quite daunting for new, small businesses. This model lease should take a lot of the worry out of the process for both landlords and tenants. This could make a real contribution to supporting new retailers wanting to open in towns and cities across the UK.”

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