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Careers In Commercial Property Law: What You Need To Know

Nikki Dale
Nikki Dale June 26, 2023
commercial property law

What is Commercial Property Law?

Commercial Property Law is the area of law that is specifically concerned with the purchase, sale, lease, and use of land specifically for commercial purposes - any property or land that generates profit for the owner.

Commercial property includes any land or building or other type of property that has a commercial purpose, whether for investment or development. This can include warehouses and head offices, agricultural buildings, and rental properties.

Commercial property law includes all the processes involved in commercial property, such as conveyancing, lease agreements, property valuations, and dispute resolution.

Dealing with commercial property law often intersects with other areas of law, including planning, construction, tax, and environmental.

All commercial enterprises and businesses that plan to buy, sell, or lease any type of commercial property need a commercial property lawyer to get the right legal advice.

The Importance of Understanding Commercial Property Law

There are many different facets of property law, and commercial property law is just one of them.

The differences are related to the profits that the land or property creates, and that means that there are certain things that need to be completed in commercial property law.

Commercial property law covers things like:

  • Commercial property acquisition
  • Property valuations
  • Legal research into title deeds and boundaries
  • Commercial leases
  • Option agreements
  • Arranging finance
  • Development projects

The law around commercial property is different in small ways from personal property, so a solid understanding of the key principles of both is needed for a successful property lawyer, whichever type you aspire to be.

Key Differences Between Commercial and Residential Property Law

Personal property law is the area of law that is concerned with the buying and selling of properties for personal or residential use.

Lawyers working in this area usually have the public as clients, and they tend to work in high street or regional offices. While they can deal with international personal property law, they do tend to stay more local and at least in the UK.

Personal property lawyers will usually have a large number of clients to manage at once, and the work can be highly time pressured.

In commercial law, the lawyers are dealing with businesses and corporations, and while they might have fewer clients there can be a lot of work needed for each. They work with small businesses as well as global conglomerates and can work on property deals in the UK and beyond.

Which companies hire candidates in commercial property law?

Many law companies that deal with real estate law also work in commercial property law, and they often hire on initial training contracts, for newly qualified solicitors, and experienced professionals.

Some of the companies that hire commercial property lawyers include:

Property law is taught as a module when you are studying for the LLB, and you will cover the following essential legal concepts:

  • Transfer of land
  • Ownership of land
  • Disputes over land
  • Tenancies
  • Licenses
  • Easements
  • Mortgages
  • Adverse possession

As a commercial property lawyer, you will be expected to deal with work like the following:

  • Providing legal advice about property acquisition or leasing, to both buyers and sellers as well as landlords and tenants.
  • Give property developers advice about new construction projects
  • Complete property information research on things like boundaries, title deeds, planning permissions, pending disputes, and commercial property standards inquiries (CPSEs)
  • Resolve disputes about commercial property
  • Provide conveyancing services
  • Create, complete, and file relevant paperwork and other necessary documentation.

Types of careers in property law

Careers in property law tend to fall into either personal or commercial, and you can grow a career and pick a career path based on the area that most interests you.

Some solicitors specialize in one area of commercial property law, like dispute resolution, while others will provide a more broad spectrum of services to help with every aspect of commercial property management.

Career options can also include moving to in-house legal positions for some of the biggest corporations, too.

The average salary of a commercial property lawyer is £52,770 a year, and this can change depending on location and level of experience. Six-figure salaries are achievable in the area of commercial property law.

Entry routes

The entry route to a career in commercial property law is similar to other solicitor careers - you will be expected to complete the SQE and the Qualifying Work Experience to get accepted for a career in law.

If you want to focus on commercial property law, then it is a good idea to approach a company that specializes in it - then you can get direct experience in the right career area for you.

You can also get involved in commercial property law by becoming a licensed conveyancer; this is something that you can do straight from school or college, and you need to achieve a Level 4 (and a Level 6) Diploma in Conveyancing Law and Practice. As part of this you will need to complete a set amount of practical experience before you are allowed to apply for a license, but once licensed you can operate as a conveyancer.

Nikki Dale June 26, 2023

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