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UK-Justice
UK-Justice, Barrister
Category: Law
Satisfied Customers: 16193
Experience:  Called to the Bar in 2007
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leaseholder of a commercial unit

Customer Question

I am a leaseholder of a commercial unit of cafe and flat above. it is a 20 yr lease all fine. It is one of several leases I hold. I rented/sublet out the cafe part of the cafe to a chap to run a coffee shop on a casual verbal basis, with the option to formalise if all was well. 9 mnths later and he is consistently late with the rent and moaning about the rent etc etc. I want him out. He is going on about his stauatory rights. I have given him 3 weeks to leave. What options do i have if he refuses? What is my position if I just change the locks. I am happy to wait longer for him to leave as long as it is definite and enforceable.

Submitted: 3 years ago.
Category: Law
Expert:  Alex J. replied 3 years ago.
Hi

Thank you for your question and welcome to Just Answer.

Is he in arrears currently?

How often does he pay his rent weekly or monthly?

Kind regards

AJ

Ps I will go off line shortly but I will be back in the morning at 8.30 am so do not be concerned if you don't hear from me right away.
Customer: replied 3 years ago.

Hi thanks.


 


I gave him an ultimatum to pay last months rent by 4pm today (over a week late). He pays monthly at the end of the month. It has always been by bank transfer. Today he left a cheque at one of my offices. I don't know when or if it will clear.


 

Expert:  Alex J. replied 3 years ago.
Hi,

Thank you.

I will summarise the position below.

The Law:
- This individual may have statutory rights under the Landlord and Tenant Act 1954;
- S.23 details who the Act applies to - Specifically "to any tenancy where the property comprised in the tenancy is or includes premises which are occupied by the tenant and are so occupied for the purposes of a business carried on by him or for those and other purposes."
- S.24 gives the tenant the right to the continuation of a tenancy where S.23 applies;
- The landlord's only option is to serve a notice to quite under S.25.

What is a S.25 Notice.
- A notice for termination under S.25 is not effective unless it is given not more than twelve nor less than six months before the date of the termination specified therein.
- The notice must also be in a prescribed form.

Because the very complex nature of serving these notices correctly, I must recommend you ask a local solicitor to do it. If the solicitor gets it wrong they will at least have indemnity insurance to compensate you.

Also I have assumed this is a business tenancy without anything in writing or seeing how this individual maintains and runs the shop I cannot be certain.

I look forward to hearing from you.

Kind regards

AJ
Customer: replied 3 years ago.
Thank you. Yes there is nothing in writing. He is a sub tenant under me. I am the master lease holder of a lease that is outside the act, so I can't see how he would be covered by that. The original verbal agreement was to see how things went. If both parties were happy, we would then draw up a more formal lease. In under 12 months, this party (me) is not happy and I want him out.
Expert:  Alex J. replied 3 years ago.
Hi,

Thank you.

That does alter the situation slightly.

Are you in breach of your lease by subletting?

Kind regards

AJ
Customer: replied 3 years ago.
I am allowed sublet with permission. I did have verbal permission from my landlord with the understanding that all would be formalised if things 'went well'. Things haven't gone well.
Expert:  Alex J. replied 3 years ago.
Hi

Thank you.

I will have to refer this to one of my colleagues.

Thanks

AJ

Expert:  UK-Justice replied 3 years ago.
Thanks for your question, my name isXXXXX will do whatever I can to help you today.

If he is a sub tenant then he does not have a tenancy as such but sounds like a licence.

As such it can be terminated at any time had for whatever reason. This means you can just change the locks.

Even if I am wrong about that and it is a tenancy as soon as he is one day late you can change the locks.

This is a commercial agreement and as such does not have the same rights as a dwelling house.

If someone is late with rent, no notice is needed, locks can be changed.

So no, you can change the locks and remove the tenant.

If there you have any questions or if I can help you with anything else please let me know,


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UK-Justice, Barrister
Category: Law
Satisfied Customers: 16193
Experience: Called to the Bar in 2007
UK-Justice and other Law Specialists are ready to help you
Customer: replied 3 years ago.

Thats great. Thank you for your help.

Expert:  UK-Justice replied 3 years ago.
Welcome

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