Landlords anticipate low rent payments as retailers ride out Covid-19

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Landlords reopening rents
The rent payments will illustrate which retailers are currently under most strain from the Covid-19 crisis
// Landlords expect to receive just 10% of the quarterly rent they are owed on Wednesday
// Rents for the 3 months to September 29 are due on June 24
// Non-essential retailers in England were permitted to reopen from June 15

Landlords are reportedly expecting to receive as little as 10 per cent of the quarterly rent they are owed this Wednesday, manifesting the pressure that property owners are under due to the coronavirus pandemic.

Rents for the three months to September 29 are due on June 24, and will provide an indication of which retailers are currently under the most strain from the crisis.

Non-essential retailers in England were permitted to begin trading again from June 15.


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However, analysts have predicted that the few days of resumed trading will not make much difference to whether companies pay rent in June, Financial Times reported.

Many retailers, including Next, Debenhams, John Lewis, Marks and Spencer, New Look and River Island, have chosen not to reopen all their stores at once.

On Friday, a ban on evicting tenants was extended by three months to September 30.

Fashion retailer Next is paying rents, though also driving hard bargains on lease renewals.

Sports Direct owner Frasers Group offered landlords half-rent in March and is expected to do the same in June.

Meanwhile, Primark did not pay rent, and instead laid out plans to landlords on wanting revised terms.

Bakery chain Greggs, which reopened 800 stores on Thursday, did pay in March but plans to go to monthly payments across its 2050-strong estate, subject to agreements from landlords.

Property giant British Land has offered a rent holiday to some small businesses on its estate for the three months from June 24.

Fellow shopping centre owner Intu, which is set to make or break negotiations with its debtholders — received less than a third of due rent on March 25, the last payment day, and expects a £180 million hit to rent receipts over the year.

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