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One of the first things to occur when a new lease is signed and the lessee (tenant) is given possession of the premises is the "fitout". This involves adapting what is oftentimes a blank, empty space to suit the various needs and requirements of the business which is about to operate out of the premises. The fitout can include a wide variety of items both "fixed" (e.g. a conveyor belt, piece of heavy machinery or partitions fixed to the walls) and "freestanding" (desks, workstations and cabinets etc.) which can lead to confusion about what can be taken when it comes time to vacate the premises at the end of the lease.
The general common law principle for deciding whether an item is a fixture or a fitting is the intention with which the item was brought on to the land and the degree to which it is "affixed" to the land. While this is generally easy to determine when the landowner (in this case the lessor or landlord) brings an item onto the property, it is not as simple when a tenant does so as a tenant is unlikely to intend to make a gift of the item to the landlord. Confusion may also arise in situations where both the landlord and the tenant are involved in the fitout of the premises.
While a large proportion of leases specifically address the removal of a tenant's fixtures and fittings at the termination of the lease and contain "make good" clauses for any damage outside of fair wear and tear which has been caused to the property, it may be prudent for both the tenant and the landlord to clearly identify which of those items installed during the fitout are intended to stay on the premises and which are to go prior to entering into the lease.