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Jamie-Law, Solicitor
Category: Property Law
Satisfied Customers: 11620
Experience:  Solicitor
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I rent a space within an old mill that has been converted

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I rent a space within an old mill that has been converted into an indoor market where there are lots of traders along with myself. I run a cafe out of the building.
Assistant: What steps have you taken so far? Have you prepared or filed any paperwork?
Customer: ??
Assistant: What confuses you?
Customer: Is this an automated reply?
Assistant: Where is the property located?
Customer: CHESHIRE
Assistant: Anything else you want the lawyer to know before I connect you?
Customer: There has been an infestation of rats within the building

Hello my name is ***** ***** I will help you with your question today. I am reviewing it, please give me a moment.

What is it you want to know about this today please?

Customer: replied 6 months ago.
Hi Jamie.
Over the course of the year we have leased the cafe, we have had numerous problems with leaking roof that hasn’t been fixed although we have been advised it would be, the roof is now leaking in the main part of the building and causes a risk to customers and staff and traders but nothing gets done to fix it properly. The landlord brought a cat into the building in the summer and since then there have been rats entering the building and on Saturday one was found in my cafe whilst it was open. I immediately shut the cafe and advised that I wanted to terminate the lease immediately as the building is not fit for purpose. The landlord threw his cat into my cafe and said ‘find the rat’ this was in front of customers .
There have been at least 10 rats found roaming the boutique over the past 8 weeks yet the landlord has done nothing sort the problem. He leaves his cat in the boutique with its food and water readily available next to a cat flap.
A few weeks back, I entered my cafe to find a pile of dog poo behind my counter from their dog, (the landlord also lives in the building) that they had let roam the building.
There are many holes within the building (not my cafe part) that rats can get into the building from outside and I have found evidence in a room that is not used of rat droppings and bedding where there are lining. The owners / landlords know about this yet have done nothing.
Do I have grounds to end the lease early as if environmental health came in they would close the cafe due to the rest of the mill that is not mine but is connected to my space being infested with rats.
Customer: replied 6 months ago.
I have also found out that the landlord lets the cat roam the building during the night to catch rats which means the cat will have been in my cafe without my consent which in itself is an environmental health concern

ok. What is it you want to ask me about this?

Customer: replied 6 months ago.
Can I terminate the lease early based on the above???

If it is a fundamental breach of contract. That is wheee it such a breach it does go to the root of the contract.

Only you know this. If it is then yes. But you need to act quickly as the longer you leave it, it may be deemed you a let the breach.

But yes, it could be a breach which means you can leave.

Can I clarify anything for you about this today, please?

If not, I would appreciate a 5-star rating for my answer, by clicking the button at the top of the screen. If you need anything further I am available for a follow up at no extra cost.

Customer: replied 6 months ago.
I don’t think you’ve really answered my question

You asked if you could leave early. You can only leave early if it is a fundamental breach of contract.

If it is then yes, you can leave.

If no, then you can not, but you can sue for breach of contract.

If the structure is unfit then you can leave.

Does that clarify?

Customer: replied 6 months ago.
It isn’t my structure that is unfit, it’s the rest of the building that surrounds my cafe, however the whole building is as one I am only responsible for my section. Does that make sense? So it’s the rest of the building that is putting my section in jeopardy because it is not suitable fir a cafe to be run out of?

Yes I understood that. Because the landlord controls the other elements it can still be a fundamental breach.

Landlord can’t expect you to run a business if the rest of the building has gone to pieces.

So if it affects your business then it is a fundamental breach.

Especially if there are rats and landlord won’t do anything, you run a food business.

Does that assist?

Jamie-Law and other Property Law Specialists are ready to help you
Customer: replied 6 months ago.
great thank you

Great. Can I help with anything else today?