Standardised forms of
non-disclosure agreements and exclusivity agreements have been published by the
Investment Property Forum (IPF) in a bid to improve efficiency.
The agreements, which deal
with confidentiality and exclusivity between buyers and sellers, can be used at
a fixed cost as an alternative to drawing up bespoke documents.
The IPF said the move was
intended to reduce the cost of producing the agreements and avoid protracted
negotiations between parties.
Dan Buckle, legal counsel at
Aberdeen Asset Management and a member of the IPF working group, said: “On a
daily basis, I and other members of the Legal Department spend a
disproportionate amount of time reviewing and negotiating non-disclosure
agreements, as each one tends to differ in content, substance and form.
“After speaking with in-house
lawyers at our competitors, all of whom had experienced the same issue, I
suggested the introduction of an industry-backed template non-disclosure
agreement, to create greater efficiency and to try to avoid protracted early
“There was overwhelming
support from everyone I spoke to and we agreed to contact the IPF to pursue the
Ciaran Carvalho, head of real
estate at Nabarro and chair of the IPF and the working group, added: “I hope
that even those organisations wedded to their own forms of these agreements
will consider adopting the standard forms.
“They allow everyone to focus
on the transaction itself rather than on spending time and effort negotiating
documentation that relates solely to the transaction process. The forms should
help reduce costs and transaction times for buyers and sellers.”