You are here: Home / List of Works / License to alter packages

License to alter packages

For several reasons leaseholders often find it necessary to make alterations to the premises they occupy. It may be that those changes need to be made before they move in, or because there is a need to refurbish, or to change their operations entirely.

At that stage, depending on the lease conditions, and depending also on the nature of the changes it is probable that a License to Alter will be required from the landlord giving the leaseholder permission to carry out the alterations.

Under most leases, a leaseholder is required to obtain consent before making any alterations to a property. For obvious reasons there are precautions and procedures that need to be followed before a License can be granted.

The most common alterations requiring a License to Alter include:

1)   altering the structure

2)   installing additional sanitary facilities

3)   installing new heating or alternative service installations

4)   cutting through an external wall

5)   removing any wall, solid or partition

6)   changing any windows

In these situations we here at C|S|M can assist in obtaining the necessary License to Alter.

There are some minor changes which may be permitted without the permission of the landlord, and these could include; putting up shelves, redecorating, laying new carpets and so on.

We are well aware that alterations to leasehold premises are a common cause of dispute, and if there is any doubt about whether works require a License to Alter, the landlord should be consulted, and we sincerely believe that it is better to take the initiative and consult now rather than possibly fall foul of a breach of the lease sometime in the future.

This is a possible minefield which our experts at C|S|M can steer you away from, though we must remind you that failure to obtain permission could constitute a serious breach of the lease.

Obtaining permission for a License to Alter

We can say for certain that when dealing with legal issues such as this then it is normal for solicitors to become involved and we know that dealing with solicitors can take a long time if they are left to their own endeavours.

That in itself can cause particular problems for the leaseholder in terms of being able to appoint designers and even contractors at risk of carrying out works which may not in the end be permitted.

Therefore, it is important that the landlord is fully acquainted with your requirements of alterations ASAP in order to determine whether:

A)  a License is necessary

B)  the likelihood of it being granted

C)  the timescale for it being granted

D)  the type/form of application required.

Of course, we have a team of highly qualified experts to steer you through all the detail and red tape so that you are compliant with the law.

We may quote from the Landlord and Tenants Act here which states,” The Landlord and Tenant Acts require that permission is not unreasonably withheld, and in some situations, alterations which are necessary to comply with statutory requirements, cannot be withheld.”

The landlord may wish to, and has the right to inspect the works at the commencement, during the construction period and on completion.

The Application

1)   Application for a License to Alter may well include:

2)   A description of the works & a programme for the works.

Drawings are necessary

3)   Drawings which show the existing and proposed layout in addition to structural drawings, calculations and building services drawings.

4)   Specifications.

5)   Risk assessments and method statements.

6)   A copy of the F10 notification.

7)   Evidence of insurances. It is possible that insurance of the works can incur heavy costs relative to the value of the works because of the risk to other parts of the premises. This may sometimes be dealt with by adding the leaseholder and contractor to the landlord's insurance.

8)   Evidence of any necessary planning permission, buildings regulations permission and other statutory approvals.

9)   Evidence of compliance with the Party Wall Act.

Peace of Mind

All of this is a lot to see to, especially when you are running a business at the same time, but this is where you should be taking the advice of qualified experts who have been through all the dramas and the red tape may times before. Call us at C|S|M and we will arrange a free site visit to your premises to discuss all the implications.