Retail rent plea could spell danger for landlords


London’s landlords are being urged by the British Retail Consortium to renegotiate shop rental agreements, on the day that rents are usually paid ahead for the next three months.

At a time when many property businesses are struggling and income is low, the quarter-day rent demand could mean that many go under altogether.

Owners of office space in London have been asked to consider accepting monthly payments. A spokesman from the British Retail Consortium said that the system of quarterly payments is an “anachronism dating back hundreds of years to the days when horseback was the fastest means of communication.”

Despite the fact that technological advances have enabled instant transfer of funds, the old tradition predominates, which some argue puts further pressure on businesses in some of the bleakest economic conditions for almost 20 years. The BRC also asked landlords to rethink upwards-only rent clauses, which are punitive when the economy is in contraction.