Maypole House, East Grinstead Sold

Following appointment as a joint administrative receiver, Lawson Commercial have sold the 1960s office block Maypole House on Maypole Road, East Grinstead for residential development. This building comprises just over 12,000 sq ft on 3 floors with 33 car spaces and a lift. It benefitted from planning permission for eight 4/5 bedroomed town houses and four 2 bedroomed flats.

Lawson Commercial partner Chris Lawson said; ‘This is another building which had been in and out of the market for a number of years and finally went into administrative receivership. We have re marketed the building with the benefit of the residential planning permission and were pleasantly surprised to receive some 11 offers for the site ranging from £500,000 to the asking price of £1 million. In each case the prospective purchaser was asked for proof of funding. The successful buyer was a Kent-based residential developer who secured the site with a bid close to the original asking price.

Whilst I am disappointed to see the loss of a commercial building nonetheless this was looking rather tired and, even for an owner occupier, it would have required substantial refurbishment to be re-used as offices again. Much of this part of East Grinstead has already been redeveloped into residential use and the design of the town houses is particularly attractive and a bit different from many of the redevelopments taking place which are majoring on blocks of flats.’

Lawson Commercial joins the Safe Agent Campaign

In addition to commercial sales and lettings, Lawson Commercial also has a commercial management department which looks after commercial properties on behalf of landlords.

Lawson Commercial partner Chris Lawson said: ‘We live in an ever increasing consumer orientated society and it becomes particularly important to know which firms adopt a totally professional attitude to looking after both landlords’ and tenants’ monies. The Safe Agent campaign is aimed at raising awareness its logo which is what to look for to find an agent where tenant’s and landlords’ monies are protected by a client money protection scheme. There are currently some 1,200 letting and management agents registered with the Safe Agent scheme and thus authorised to use the logo. Consumers should always look out for this easily identifiable mark when considering using an agent who will handle their money.

The launch of the Safe Agent scheme follows a number of high profile media cases where unscrupulous letting agents have absconded with tenant and landlord funds. Although this scheme is predominantly for residential lettings agents we felt that we also should join it because we do look after both commercial tenants and landlords and we have always belonged to a client money protection scheme.

We welcome enquiries from commercial landlords who are considering using an agent to look after their commercial properties, dealing with all the issues involved in property management. We can offer peace of mind when it comes to client money protection as evidenced by our adoption of the Safe Agent scheme and use of its logo. If you are such a landlord please do call us on 01825 764488.’

Former Sausage Factory Sold at Ninfield

Lawson Commercial have sold the former Hygrade Food factory on the Bexhill road at Ninfield. This 1.5 acre site included 5 groups of buildings totalling overall some 22,000 sq ft of space. The site started out back in the 1950s as a turkey farm and gradually changed its status over the years as different owners bought and sold the site. The factory closed in 2007 and, at that time, was been used for the manufacture of sausages and other meat products for supermarkets own label ranges. Unfortunately the company found they were uncompetitive and it was thus no longer viable to keep the site open. It originally came on the market at a price in excess of £1 million. Lawson Commercial partner Chris Lawson, who handled the sale, said: ‘The original price was rather optimistic in my view – it was not our figure. Sadly this was about the time the property market took a severe downturn. Our most recent asking price was £850,000 which was certainly more realistic but several prospective occupiers found it difficult to obtain the necessary funding for a successful  purchase. I am pleased to say that we have now sold the property to Skinners Sheds who are going to refurbish the site and establish a new manufacturing outlet for their products. It is very good to see this site continuing to be used for business purpose and particularly manufacturing’.

2010 Rating Reviews

Has the Valuation Office correctly reflected the market conditions in the Rateable Value applied to your business space? Are the valuation components and/or floor areas shown in the Summary Valuation correct?

It is always prudent for a ratepayer to review the potential for reducing their rate liability. Where an appeal is appropriate, it is important to highlight that ratepayers are limited to only one appeal per event. Further appeals may be possible but require a material change of circumstances.

These restrictions to the appeal process make the choice of professional adviser very important.