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WIBU to delay house move because of this

(10 Posts)
PiperChapstick Tue 17-Nov-15 22:07:56

We're supposed to be moving into a new property in a months time, however searches haven't yet been completed and when we were at the house a few days ago looking round again the couple dropped the bombshell that they didn't get planning permission when they built the conservatory. The house was brand new when they bought it and the conservatory is enormous - it's what sold us the house really!

I haven't mentioned to solicitor yet, but after a bit of research I think anything under 70cubic metres doesn't need planning permission. Now I think the conservatory is much bigger than this - I say this as we moved abroad temporarily a few years ago and used a storage unit which was 120cubic metres and that space was smaller than this conservatory or it may be smaller and I'm just being thick

So, I have little knowledge on the subject as its been so long since I've bought, but I know they'd have to get retrospective planning permission. I'm guessing this won't be quick.

The other couple are elderly and moving to a bungalow as the husband is ill and struggles with stairs. Their bungalow needs a lot of work and they've booked a builder for mid-December - hence the need to move in a month. However, I don't want the planning permission responsibility to fall to us, WIBU to say I'm not moving til it's all sorted? The conservatory is unusually big and I'd be worried in case planning permission was rejected.

I'm so fed up, it's a dream house, everything we need within our budget near an excellent school and we have saved for years and years to be able to move, these homes seldom come up and I'd be heartbroken to lose it sad

Grilledaubergines Tue 17-Nov-15 22:10:03

Retrospective consent - speak to your solicitor, they'll advise.

littlepinkgiraffe Tue 17-Nov-15 22:15:08

Your solicitor will request this information from your seller's solicitors anyway. If there is no permission they will request either retrospective or an indemnity.

Haggisfish Tue 17-Nov-15 22:17:06

Yes probably an indemnity-cost our sellers about fifty quid. We had to pay for one for a door that we hadn't received the glazing cert for. Nothing dreadful. Don't, whatever you do, contact the council about it as it will mean you can't get an indemnity for it.

Haggisfish Tue 17-Nov-15 22:17:52

We have an enormous conservatory with no planning permission as well,

sparechange Tue 17-Nov-15 22:19:14

70 cubic metres is quite big, but new build estates often have covenants that mean you have to get planning permission and/or permission from the developer to do any extensions.
You need to flag this to your solicitor asap and get them to get the vendor to provide either an indemnity or get retrospective permissions.

lalalonglegs Tue 17-Nov-15 22:26:53

If it's been up longer than 4 years, the owners can get a certificate of lawfulness (I think that's the name) from the local authority but, as spare change says, it's a restriction on the development that could be trickier. Your solicitor should be able to tell you if there are any in place and the owners can easily apply for the certificate. It needn't delay things very much.

MummaGiles Tue 17-Nov-15 22:29:14

Given the time constraints your solicitor will ask your sellers to purchase an insurance policy that will benefit you as future owners of the property and indemnify you against any costs arising out of the lack of planning permission.

When did they put the conservatory on? Once it has been up for a certain period of time (can't remember how many years off the top of my head) it is deemed to have consent anyway and the council would struggle to enforce.

GeekyQueen Wed 18-Nov-15 09:12:54

Definitely mention it to solicitors asap, if it was a new build in a development they may have needed to see consent under restrictive covenants too.

They can either look to obtain retrospective consent or arrange indemnity insurance. Its important you do not approach the council to make your own enquiries as this will invalidate the policy.

specialsubject Wed 18-Nov-15 09:23:22

I hope it all goes through. But the couple who have booked a builder without even exchange and with others in the chain not yet completing searches are daft. And, I'm afraid, not your problem.

keep talking to your solicitor, who is responsible for ensuring you don't exchange until this is sorted to your and his/her satisfaction.

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