Sale and Leaseback

The primary care sector is facing ever increasing pressures the moment and GP Practices are now subject to a host of uncertainties and challenges that were not previously there.

There are mounting difficulties in recruiting new partners, dealing with the retirement of existing partners, managing and maintaining the condition of surgery premises and making improvements to surgery premises. These difficulties are set against an overriding obligation to ensure compliance with the stringent requirements of regulators and to realise the objectives of NHS England in terms of service delivery.

An increasing number of practices are choosing the sale and leaseback of their premises as a method of releasing equity, dealing with succession issues and improving their premises.

A sale and leaseback involves the sale of the freehold of surgery premises owned by the partners to an investor. The practice will then take a lease back of the premises to continue in occupation. This arrangement is usually a cost neutral one for the practice as it receives reimbursement from NHS England of the rent payable under the lease. The equity released upon the sale to the investor will be used to repay existing mortgages and then usually split between the partners or channelled back into the practice to develop new services or recruit specialist staff.

The primary care market has seen a recent upsurge of interest amongst investors looking to buy GP surgery premises, with many of them having wide experience in dealing with this type of transaction.

Let our specialist team help you

Our expert healthcare property team are well experienced in dealing with sale and leaseback transactions and have advised a large number of GP Practices in relation to these arrangements.

We will provide you with step by step support throughout the transaction from advising you on proposed heads of terms, negotiating the contract for sale, agreeing a lease with the inclusion of key GP tenant protection provisions to completing the deal. A dedicated member of our team will manage the process for you to ensure the transaction proceeds efficiently, advising you at an early stage of any actions you need to take, such as obtaining NHS England’s approval.

We have good relationships with a number of healthcare investors and developers, meaning that we are well placed to anticipate specific requirements of investors to ensure that the transaction proceeds quickly and smoothly.

It is imperative for partners to take the advice of healthcare specialist professionals including solicitors, accountants and surveyors. We work very closely with a large number of these professionals to provide a comprehensive service to our clients.

If you are considering a sale and lease back transaction, one of our team of healthcare specialist lawyers would be pleased to talk through your requirements and answer any questions. Please contact us at any time. We can take you through the pros and cons of this arrangement and advise you on the initial steps required to get things moving.