Dilapidations disputes arise when the tenant and the landlord disagree about what condition the property should be left in at the end of a lease.
Much depends on the terms of the lease and, in some cases, the quality of the evidence of initial condition.
The parties to a dilapidations dispute must follow the Pre-Action Protocol for Claims in Relation to Damages for the Physical State of Commercial Property at Termination of a Tenancy (the ‘Dilapidations Protocol’).
Paragraph 3.3 of the Dilapidations Protocol states that the Schedule of Dilapidations should be sent within 56 days of the termination of the tenancy. Therefore, early advice from an experienced solicitor and/or surveyor is essential to a satisfactory resolution. Tenants need to be aware of the effect of section 18(1) of The Landlord & Tenant Act 1927 which may have the effect of substantially reducing the amount they are obliged to pay a landlord.