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Rapid move toward shorter leases on business premises

The average length of a small business lease has been reduced by more than 12 months in the last two years, as business owners looked to retain their flexibility, according to research from the British Property Federation (BPF).

A BPF study of 91,000 tenancies found the average lease length for a small firm dropped to 4.1 years in 2009-10, compared to 5.4 years in 2007-8. Cutting the length of business leases has been a trend since the early 1990s, when a typical lease length was between 20 and 25 years.

Undervalued properties preventing bank lending to small firms

A small business support group is warning that inaccurate property valuations are preventing many smaller firms from accessing affordable bank lending.
The Forum of Private Business believes that banks are often under-valuing properties when considering them as security for business loans.