Buying & Renting Properties for Use Class E
In September 2020, the government changed the use class categories within the Town and Country Planning (Use Classes) order 1987 (As amended), which resulted in the D1 and D2 markets being revoked. The core of the D1/D2 market now falls within E class (Commercial, Business, and Service) which includes a diverse range of properties available for different business types, including health clinics, day nurseries, gyms, and fitness centres, amongst others.
Bernard Gordon & Co have worked in this market for 30+ years, and whilst the letter use class has changed, our knowledge and experience haven’t. We are still one of the leading agents within the day nursery, medical and fitness markets across London and the South East. We have helped hundreds, if not thousands, of businesses source new properties over the years and have accumulated a substantial pool of experience and knowledge within the markets.
We understand the specifications for day nurseries include the size of the unit and classroom to ensure maximum capacity, outside space, parking & drop off facilities where applicable, longer leases to ensure continuous business, etc. We have the knowledge to find clinics/medical units/dental practices focusing on location, whether it is high footfall/passer-by trade or more discreet locations, we know decontamination rooms are necessary, DDA compliance and CQC approval need consideration, and we appreciate the size and accessibility of units are key. We have an abundance of knowledge on gyms and fitness studios, ensuring floor loading, ceiling heights, power supply, accessibility etc. Finally, within use class E, we also follow the latest trends within all our markets, especially medical and fitness, so we can be up to date on the latest requirements as and when these trends hit the market.
Use class E has opened new opportunities for former D1 and D2 occupiers that perhaps weren’t as easy previously, i.e., converting an office with a car park into a day nursery is a more straightforward process given both fall within use class E. This is also the case when converting a high street shop into a fitness studio or a medical clinic, given that both fall within use class E. It is essential, when it comes to planning permission and advice, that any tenant or purchaser satisfies themselves with planning permission as conditions, section 106 notices, and other legislations can sometimes restrict the use of a property; therefore, we advise anyone to seek advice from a planning consultant. For full information on the new planning use class categories, please visit https://bernardgordon.co.uk/planning.
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