Budget 2015: Departments to pay rent on office buildings

Departments to pay market-level rent for offices and other freehold assets in drive to better manage government land and property

By Sarah.Aston

18 Mar 2015

Departments will be charged commercial rent on all offices as a part a wider drive to make government management of land and property more efficient. 

Under plans announced in chancellor George Osborne’s 2015 Budget today, a new central body will be created to provide greater strategic and commercial oversight of the use of government assets. 

Under the direction of the Treasury and the Government Property Unit, the body will own and manage the government’s assets and will also be responsible for selling land and property “for productive use”, including selling land for new homes. 

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According to the Budget document, the new body will be responsible for all department property with the exception of estate owned by the Ministry of Defence and the Foreign and Commonwealth Office’s overseas estates. 

Instead, both the MoD and the FCO will be required to create their own mechanism for managing assets. 

Subject to legislation, the reforms are set to start immediately with the view to have an operational model by March 2017.

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