The value or potential of any development site can easily be prejudiced without thorough investigation. GA Solicitors’ commercial property team works with both landowners and commercial and residential property developers on a wide variety of land acquisition and development projects across the country.
We will ensure the legal title is assessed and carry out all necessary searches and enquiries to ensure the smooth passage of any relevant transaction. We will deal with any resulting issues such as rights of way, or any other defects in title which could hinder later development.
We provide specialist advice on assembling the site (investigation into ownership, subsidiary interests, etc.), option, overage and pre-emption agreements and contracts conditional on planning permission.
Option, overage and pre-emption agreements:
These agreements are often fundamental elements of realising development potential.
Should you find land suitable for development and want to secure the same while you are seeking planning permission, or identify land adjacent to an existing development which you would like to acquire for future expansion, then you need to protect the right to purchase that land.
One of the main tools to achieve this is the taking of an option agreement which provides the developer with flexibility as to the timing of any required land acquisition.
There are several types of option agreement and we have specialist expertise from both the landowner’s and purchaser/developer’s perspective.
Once land has the benefit of planning permission it is likely its value will have increased. It is for this reason sellers will sometimes look for an obligation on the buyer/developer to make an overage payment upon such a trigger event taking place. This is sometimes known as ‘claw-back’.
Overage and option agreements can often be highly complex and in all cases will require expert drafting and negotiation.
Whereas an option agreement normally gives the buyer/developer the right to require the landowner to sell the land to it within a specified option period, a pre-emption agreement gives a right of first refusal before the landowner can sell to a third party. .
With so many different and complex issues to consider, you need to ensure you have a specialist solicitor on your side protecting your best interests. GA’s commercial property team works with landowners and developers across the country possessing all necessary expertise to deal with every aspect of property and land development.