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BRC warns of toughest rent quarter day

The British Retail Consortium [BRC] has renewed calls for landlords to be more flexible on rents as the retail sector faces its toughest rent quarter day for 18 years today.

The BRC said that the first few months of the year usually saw the lowed levels of consumer spending, which had been compounded this year by the recession and urged landlords to allow retailers to switch existing stores to monthly terms rather than quarterly where retailers request it.

“A thriving retail sector is essential for the health of landlords and the wider UK economy. Boarded up shops are becoming commonplace. An unrealistic payments regime can only increase the pressure on hard-pressed retailers and the jobs they support.”

BRC director general Stephen Robertson

The BRC said that the current quarterly payment scheme was creating “major cash flow difficulties” for retailers and warned that by the end of this year 140,000 shops would be vacant and 200,000 retail jobs will have been lost.

BRC director general Stephen Robertson said: “A dismal Christmas for many retailers and following the year’s lowest spending months has meant the toughest quarter day since the early 1990s. A thriving retail sector is essential for the health of landlords and the wider UK economy. Boarded up shops are becoming commonplace. An unrealistic payments regime can only increase the pressure on hard-pressed retailers and the jobs they support.”

“Some landlords have recognised this ancient anachronism is even more unjustifiable in the toughest trading conditions for years. I urge all landlords to show the same flexibility.”

The BRC has created a “How To” guide and template letters retailers can use to approach their landlords about changing rent payment terms. Download them at www.brc.org.uk/rentmonthly

 

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