Whatever your premises challenge, we’re here to help. Whether you’re looking for a sale and leaseback arrangement to release equity in your premises and ease partner succession, a brand new surgery building or improvements to your existing premises, our in-house team can support you. Read more below.
How will primary care, tech and design combine? That’s the question we’re asking in our concept design for a primary care centre of the future. We’ve looked at how primary care’s growing use of technology will shift the way its buildings are designed and laid out – with the ambitions of the NHS Long Term Plan likely to influence the way primary care buildings look, feel and operate for you and your patients by 2030 and beyond.
…needing to release equity?
…getting ready to retire?
…wanting to remove the headache of managing your building?
…struggling to meet CQC premises requirements?
A sale and leaseback with us could be your answer. We invest to buy your building from you, and become your long-term partner on your premises. Your lease and rent are agreed with the Valuation Office, ensuring value for money. And you can focus on the day job – free of the risks and responsibilities of property ownership.
A: We make you an offer to buy your premises based on the market value of your property, capitalising the notional rent and any other income (such as pharmacy) over a term of years. Once the sale completes, a lease is then simultaneously granted back to you allowing continued exclusive use and rights over the premises. As the landlord, we don’t have any control or involvement in the day-to-day running of your practice.
A: Repairing terms are agreed between us as buyer and you as seller, but typically practices retain responsibility for repairs and maintenance. In that case, there is simply a general obligation to keep the premises in good repair.
A: You are responsible for your legal fees, and you will need to consider your costs of any outstanding mortgages or redemption penalties. The lease may be subject to Stamp Duty Land Tax but exemptions sometimes apply and we can explore this with you. We are responsible for the costs of any formal valuations and surveys.
A: Typically, we would grant a lease for a period of 21 years although we are flexible according to your circumstances. The exact terms would be agreed between the parties including the District Valuer at the outset and your own solicitor would of course provide legal advice in this regard.
A: We invest for the long-term, so we work with you to improve, extend or redevelop your premises where possible. As a healthcare developer we also have the capital resources to fund new builds; if your practice relocates to one of our new developments, you would be entitled to terminate the existing lease and walk away from your old premises.
A: Your rent would be current market rent as agreed by a District Valuer for the Valuation Office Agency (an executive agency of Her Majesty’s Treasury). The rent is reviewed at three yearly intervals upon agreement with the District Valuer.
A: Outgoing partners are released from lease liabilities without the need for consent. We require two GP partners to be named upon the lease at any one time; these names can change as freely as you wish.
A: The lease will be contracted into the Landlord and Tenant Act 1954, meaning that you as tenant have a statutory right to renew the lease and remain in occupation at the end of the initial term.
A: A new lease will need prior approval by NHS England, and we will support you through this process.
…struggling for space in your existing building?
…need room to provide additional services?
…based in a housing growth area?
…merging with another practice?
At the very least, you’re likely to be looking at ways to extend your existing premises. You might also be exploring how you can develop a brand new building for your practice.
We can help, delivering your new development from start to finish. We provide full funding, lead all aspects of the consultation and planning processes, take on the risks of development and delivery of the building and become your long-term building owner once it’s finished. You’ll work closely with us on how your building looks, feels and works for your patients and staff, turning your vision into reality.
A: We design every new building around the needs of those who will use it, and we will seek your detailed ideas and input. We can arrange site visits to some of our completed projects to help you consider what may or may not suit your practice, as well as the opportunity to talk to practices who have been through the process.
A: Depending on the size of the building, the construction process itself usually takes around twelve months. But most of the hard work is done before: we estimate around eighteen months to undertake the NHS approval process, design, planning, site acquisition, legal negotiations etc.
A: A secure property investment. Our return is based on the rental reimbursement agreed with the District Valuer and the security of the income. We only invest in primary care buildings and have 15 years of experience of working with GPs and NHS tenants.
A: We fully expect doctors to come and go during the life of the lease and all we ask is that there are always two GP partners named on the lease at any one time. We simply require notification of any changes to the partnership and outgoing partners are then released from the lease obligations.
A: We don’t require any commitment from you until the terms of the lease are agreed, the rent is approved by the District Valuer/NHS and building work is ready to start. At that stage, you’ll need to sign a contract to enter into the agreed form of lease at completion.
A: The terms of the lease are largely dictated by the District Valuer and the NHS and the lease term will usually be a minimum of 21 years, with differing maintenance and insurance obligations depending on the specific nature of the project. Your solicitor will advise you during the lease negotiation process and protect your interest.
A: We absorb all the risk and costs associated with the site acquisition and development process, which includes all professional fees such as planning, ground investigation, architects and other consultants. We can also help with legal and relocation costs, should reimbursement not be forthcoming from the relevant NHS body.
A: We’re long-term investors, so you have continuity throughout the entire development process and throughout the life of the lease. The building contractor is retained for the first twelve months to rectify any minor defects that may arise and you will have a designated in-house property manager for your building to arrange maintenance contracts as necessary and help you settle in.
The best service comes from property managers who really know their stuff – and their buildings. That’s why our team is in-house, and they only work on primary care premises and community health buildings. As one of our tenants, your property manager will visit you regularly to see how things are going, and the team is always at the end of the phone or on email to help with anything you need.
Extensions, different layouts, updating décor, accessing funding and trying new ideas – our specialists are passionate about finding ways to make your building work as hard as possible for you. As one of our tenants, we keep in close touch on how things are going and what would make your building better.
We work to make sure it happens as little as possible, but all buildings have problems from time to time. In healthcare buildings, we know problems need solving around your clinical activity and with minimal disruption to your patients and staff. That’s why our property management is entirely in-house.
95% of our tenants say they’d consider recommending us to others, and we’ve been pleased to support the Patients Association on national research into how patients themselves experience primary care buildings.
We’ve been working as a premises partner to the NHS and GPs for 15 years.
A constituent of the FTSE 250, we hold a Fitch Investment Grade rating of A-. As an internally-managed Real Estate Investment Trust we can make quick decisions on investing capital.
We only invest in healthcare infrastructure. We use our buildings to support local projects and social prescribing initiatives which our GP tenants tell us improve health for the communities they work in, and our charity partnership with Dementia UK is designed to support one of the fastest-growing patient groups using our buildings. We believe the places and spaces in which we receive care from the NHS have a fundamental part to play in delivering its goals.
Whether it’s innovative build techniques to reduce the impact of construction on the environment, or design and technology to cut energy use and costs for our NHS and GP tenants, we believe the NHS’s buildings should lead the way on sustainability. All our new buildings are designed to achieve BREEAM ‘very good’ or ‘excellent’ ratings.
“I’m really pleased to be here to say… just how much this building will mean for services and support for residents in the coming years. We have a primary care centre that we can be proud of, which will grow our services.”
“Ashley, I feel blessed in that here at the Medical Centre we have an amazing team and now we also have an amazing new building. I am very proud of all we have achieved and a lot of that is down to all your efforts and that of your team.”
“We have been working with Assura now for 10 years and in that time, they have consistently met our demands to a very high standard, they are very reactive to our urgent problems and deal with our issues in a timely manner.”
“The Assura team has worked closely with the builders to make this a reality. Together, they’ve carried out a phenomenal remodelling – literally moving the walls of the building out in every direction, while service as usual for our patients continued on site. We now have the space and functionality to take us into the next stages of primary care, and provide our patients with a whole range of new services closer to home.”