SUBIACO LANDLORD RESPONDS
THE owner of a commercial property leased to restaurateur Alain Fabregues says a rent increase to $1000 per sq m from next month was part of an agreement signed in 2011.
Lepley Properties holding company Sanur released a statement via Professional Public Relations, which it engaged on January 16, outlining details of the rent agreement.
A Sanur spokeswoman said the lease signed in November 2011 included an initial rent of $83,000 (excluding GST) per annum or $400/sq m.
She said the agreement included a rent increase to $103,750 per annum or $500/sq m in February 2013, $124,500 per annum or $600/sq m the following February and in February this year, an annual rent of $207,500 or $1000/sq m.
The spokeswoman said the 2015 increase was comparable to other shops in the area.
“The rent increase that will occur in February 2015 is not a market rent review and not a surprise to Mr Fabregues,” she said.
“It was specifically agreed to in the lease executed in 2011. By February 2016, four years after the lease was signed, the average rent that will have been paid is $566/sq m.”
On January 2, Mr Fabregues painted a sign on his shop windows about the 66 per cent rent increase in public protest. He said the increase came after he pulled out of a verbal agreement to open a restaurant in Barrie Lepley’s Seddon Street development.
The restaurateur also claims that his landlord forced him to remove restaurant equipment, freezer goods and dry store from an untenanted room he had been using since he opened Bistro des Artistes.
The Sanur spokeswoman said the room did not form part of the leased area.
“As a favour, Sanur allowed it to be used temporarily and at no charge,” she said. “It is no longer available to him.”
She said Sanur had spent nearly $150,000 in the first year of the lease helping to fit out the premises.
“Sanur agreed to Mr Fabregues not paying any rent at all until he was able to open the restaurant in June 2012,” she said. “The support given to Mr Fabregues was provided in goodwill to help him build a profitable and successful business.
“In 30 years as an investor and manager of property in Subiaco, Sanur has never been so generous in assisting an incoming tenant.”