Five-point proposal set out to help retail property

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A radical new proposal to help owners of retail property and their tenants have been created by property services company Colliers International,. This is in response to the troubled state of the retail property market and the failures of several major retailers.
The five main points of the proposals are standard five-year leases, standard white box specifications, rents based on shop sales, break options and limited incentives. Break options mean that retailers can terminate leases if their turnover fails to meet a specific figure. White box options provide standard fittings to minimise the cost and time of moving into properties. Incentives can include rent-free periods when tenants move in. If rents are based on turnover, it is suggested that incentives should be limited, with rent-free periods not exceeding three months. If the proposals are accepted, they could cover the whole of the UK and provide standard terms and conditions that benefit retailers as well as landlords who want returns that can cover commercial mortgage repayments and provide a profit. In Scotland, tenants require a building warrant before they can fit out a store. This can take three months, sometimes preventing a tenant moving in by the busy Christmas period. This can deter some retailers from operating in Scotland, but the retail industry is pushing to change this. The retail director of Colliers International, John Duffy, said:
“The five-point plan is good for the whole of the UK, but the industry north of the border needs to push for building warrant changes too.”

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