If you are a developer, you probably have a good understanding of the importance of expert legal advice. To maximise your investment and make sure your projects run smoothly, having experienced property development solicitors on your team is crucial.
From making sure your purchase is dealt with promptly to ensuring you have the legal rights you need for the development, advice from a property team with genuine commercial understanding is essential. An ordinary residential conveyancer will often not have the expertise and business acumen to give you the guidance you need for a property development transaction.
If you are managing a profitable property enterprise, you need a solicitor with experience in the development sector. At Bonallack & Bishop, we have a specialist property investment team dealing with both commercial and residential property for both small and medium-sized developers.
Property development – we cover a full range of work
Our property solicitors handle a wide variety of work for investors and developers nationwide, including:
· Bridging finance
· Drafting residential and commercial leases
· Joint ventures contracts and disputes
· Land promotion agreements
· Loan agreements
· Overage agreements
· Plot sales
· Residential and commercial property disputes
· Sale of residential and commercial property
· Site acquisition
· Title splits
We have a strong understanding of the commercial elements of property development as well as outstanding legal expertise. We know how important it often is to move quickly in acquiring a site while also ensuring that you have the scope to develop it in the way that you wish.
If complications arise, we have the experience to deal with them promptly and effectively so that your development will not be delayed.
Our 27 strong property team is led by Chris Tate, a solicitor with an exceptional level of experience in both residential and commercial property purchases for development. And 2 of our team, Senior Partner, Tim Bishop, and commercial solicitor Phiroze Daver, are active property investors and developers themselves.
We are formally recommended by a number of property training businesses including Progressive Property, and additionally are the recommended law firm on a number of Facebook property investor and developer groups. We are also the only solicitors recommended by the HomeOwners Alliance for leasehold work.
Understanding your needs
We will take the time to understand your development and what you need from us. We always identify and deal with potential difficulties as soon as possible. This could be complications with the legal title, covenants that affect use of the land or dealing with other parties who have rights over the land.
Our advice will be practical and actionable and we will do all we can to avoid delays.
Development site acquisition
As well as ensuring that your site purchase moves to completion promptly, we will also look at any potential issues that could affect your development or the future sale of your property. Where necessary, we will negotiate with the landowner on your behalf, including in respect of purchase agreements and option agreements.
We will go through the contract and title documentation, ensuring that there are no restrictions that you need to be aware of. We are used to working to meet tight deadlines in site acquisitions and moving quickly to resolve difficulties.
Buying development property at auction
If you are thinking of buying property for development at auction, it is essential to ask an experienced property development solicitor to carry out comprehensive due diligence work.
We frequently act for property developers in going through the legal title and search results for property to be sold at auction. This will reassure you that you will be able to develop the site in the way that you wish.
It will also give you confidence in deciding how much you are prepared to bid. We will work quickly to give you a full report on the property or site. If you are successful at the auction, we will ensure that you are ready for completion on the required date.
If you are considering an option agreement, we can advise you of the terms and conditions and make sure that the contract is in your best interests. Where necessary, our property development solicitors will negotiate with the owner’s legal team to ensure you have the flexibility you need.
Development finance advice
Dealing efficiently with development finance is a key part of success in securing a site. We are on the panel of approved solicitors of all major lenders – about 15 in total. This means that we can represent them in respect of mortgage finance.
As well as carrying out due diligence work on your behalf, we will also report to the lender. They will need us to confirm that a site is good security for their loan. We will ensure that their terms and conditions are met and that any unusual aspects are promptly brought to their attention.
Where complications arise, our property solicitors understand the options available. This means that we can suggest solutions and work to achieve them without delay.
Leases and sales
We routinely deal with work following the completion of a property development. This can include drawing up leases and handling the sale of the development or units – both residential and commercial.
Where a development includes flats or commercial units, we regularly draft the required leases. We will work with you as the freeholder to identify what rights and obligations to include. We will make sure that your position as freeholder is protected as far as possible and that the lease is a solid foundation for your relationship with the leaseholders.
Where necessary, we will set up a management company to run the freehold and leases.
Plot or unit Sales
If you intend to sell the developed property or units, we can represent you in the sales, giving a seamless service. We will put together a comprehensive contract package for the sale of plots, flats or other units, reducing the number of questions that buyers will have.
Having dealt with the purchase and potentially the drafting of the leases, we will be able to deal efficiently with enquiries raised by buyers’ solicitors. We know how important it is for cash flow to set ambitious deadlines and we always work hard to meet these, keeping the pressure on buyers’ solicitors where necessary.
Property Development – Acting for Landowners
Our team also work with owners of land with development potential in order to maximise value. That includes a range of approaches including land promotion agreements, options, overage agreements as well as straightforward land sales.
Click here to read more about purchase lease option agreements