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Commercial leases and licences

Embarking on a commercial property venture involves navigating a maze of paperwork, negotiations, and procedures. The first major crossroad is choosing between a lease or license—often a confusing decision for many business owners.

Understanding the ins and outs of your agreement is essential for both tenants and landlords. Making an informed choice between a lease and a license can save you from future disputes. It's all about knowing what you're getting into, whether you're offering up the property or moving your business in.

What is the difference between a Commercial License and a Commercial Lease?

The differences are significant. A license is pretty straightforward—it gives you the right to use the property temporarily. Think of it as a short-term pass; when time's up, you can be asked to pack up and leave with a 28-day notice. You sign on the dotted line, and that's pretty much it.

On the flip side, a commercial property lease is more of a commitment. It's protected by the Landlord and Tenant Act 1954, laying out clear rights and responsibilities for both you and your landlord. Leases typically last a good while—around 8 to 10 years—and ending one isn't as simple as with a license.

Why should you work with us?

Whether you're diving into a lease or exploring a license, our team of Commercial Property Solicitors is here to guide you. We're the experts in drafting agreements that suit you —whether you're the landlord or the future tenant. With us, you'll understand every last detail before making your mark.

If you are looking at a lease or license agreement, or just want to fully understand what you're signing up for – our Commercial Property Solicitors will make sure your next step is the right step for you. Just call 01926 491181 or email: 


Team members

Christopher Houghton
Solicitor | Senior Director
Elizabeth Williams
James Williams
Solicitor | Director
Lauren Smith
Chartered Legal Executive FCILEX
Sat Bhandal
Solicitor | Director

News and media

  • News
    • Posted on April 16, 2024
      Christopher Houghton, our Senior Director has celebrated his 80th Birthday this week. Whilst most think of retiring, his love for a challenge is still going strong with regular skiing trips and horse-riding adventures, the most recent being across the Andes. With one hand on a ski pole or rein, the other is always on the phone to the office!
    • Posted on March 14, 2022
      We are delighted to announce the arrival of Liz Williams who joins our highly regarded Commercial Property team in Warwick. With over 20 years’ experience, Liz is a well-respected commercial property solicitor, advising clients in all types of commercial property transactions from leases and acquisitions of land for development to the sale and purchase of small businesses such as hotels, restaurants, shops and cafes to name a few!
    • Posted on August 16, 2021
      The purpose of a rent review is to regularly reassess the rent that the landlord is offering at different intervals within the lease, usually, every three to five years. It enables the landlord to review the current value of the property and the level of rent payable.

      The most common rent review provisions found in leases today are:

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