Midlands firm Gateley Wareing has purchased the new Birmingham premises that it is due to move into in September 2003.
Rather than renting the Edmund Street building, Gateleys’ 22 equity partners have decided to buy the freehold outright from Barwood, the developer.
Gateleys senior partner Michael Ward told The Lawyer that this was a cheaper option, because the interest repayments on the money that was borrowed to make the purchase are lower than the rent. Ward said that, in total, the partners spent approximately £14m to buy and redevelop the building.
Gateleys is also planning to let out one of the six floors to a client. Commercial insurance broker Beddis Hobbs and Partners is expected to rent the first floor. However, the firm is not proposing to do a sale-and-leaseback, which could generate a potential windfall for the partners and boost profitability.
Ward said: “We could sell the freehold to a pension fund and then rent [the premises] from the fund. But that’s not our current intention.”