Home REIT plc negotiates surrender of leases for over 600 properties

LONDON: Home REIT plc has successfully negotiated the surrender of leases for over 600 properties from its largest tenant collective, Big Help.

This move, which represents approximately 30% of Home REIT’s portfolio, was finalized on May 28, marking a pivotal step in the company’s efforts to stabilize its holdings and enhance rent collection.

The comprehensive agreement with Big Help—a conglomerate that includes Big Help Homes CIC, Big Help Project Ltd, CG Community Council, Dovecot & Princess Drive Community Association, N-Trust Homes CIC, and Select Social Housing CIC—was meticulously orchestrated to ensure a seamless transition with minimal impact on the current occupants. The properties, which house a diverse group of private and social tenants, will now be directly managed by Home REIT, allowing for more efficient rent collection and opening up new asset management possibilities.

To facilitate this transition, Home REIT is set to appoint a cadre of Property Managers tasked with overseeing the day-to-day operations and ensuring consistent rent collection. This strategic realignment aligns with Home REIT’s investment policy aimed at portfolio stabilization and is expected to have no adverse effects on the existing tenants.

The Board and AEW, after thorough consideration of all available options, have endorsed this transaction as the optimal solution for the company and its shareholders. By regaining control of the properties, Home REIT is poised to directly manage the rental income stream and eliminate the intermediary role previously held by Big Help.

This development comes amidst reports of previous tensions between Home REIT and Big Help, where the latter had withheld rent payments due to the poor condition of the properties¹. The resolution of this matter through the lease surrenders is seen as a positive outcome for both parties, providing Home REIT with an opportunity to directly address property management and maintenance issues.

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