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buying a house that is currently both residential and commercial

(8 Posts)
SusieFlo Mon 15-Feb-16 13:11:14

Can anyone possibly advise (in basic terms) what the implications are of buying a house that is currently registered for both commercial and residential use?

I'm referring to a home where the current owner lives there but is using two rooms as business premises (and gets separate utility bills for that part of the house.)

If someone wanted to buy the house purely for residential use, what would be the down-side of leaving its legal status as-is but just turning those rooms back into ordinary residential rooms? Alternatively (assuming that is not a good idea) does anyone know roughly how much faff and cost is typically involved in changing the registered use of a house from commercial/residential back to purely residential?

Many thanks.

Sunnyshores Mon 15-Feb-16 17:17:54

The first difficulty would be getting a mortgage on a dual purpose building. Youd probably need a specialist lender.

If the property has history as being 100% residential then I wouldnt have thought changing it back would be difficult - the council should tell you in a phonecall. And tell you what cost there is for doing this. Probably a flat fee of maybe £500, maybe some drawings needed.

Presumably sorting this out would increase the propertys value too, so worth some effort.

Personally I'd do it all legally and correctly or not at all. You may need to sell quickly in the future and this missmash wouldnt.

TheCountessofFitzdotterel Mon 15-Feb-16 17:26:21

Our house used to be a care home and the only thing that has not been straightforward is the sodding utility companies who get very confused by you trying to change a business account to a domestic one. You would not believe the hours of phone calls / thick file of paperwork my poor dh generated over something that really should have been a single phone call.

I don't think we had to submit any drawings or massive fees for change of use to the council, though it did hold up the purchase. Actually, come to think of it, it must have been the vendor that did that bit.

TheCountessofFitzdotterel Mon 15-Feb-16 17:28:03

Are there separate utility meters?

lalalonglegs Mon 15-Feb-16 17:30:59

Was it built as a live/work unit? If so, some LAs are very reluctant toc hanger use to fully residential as they want to keepb businesses/employment in the area.

wowfudge Mon 15-Feb-16 18:17:58

I can think of several issues to deal with - it will need the correct planning consent to be used solely as a residential property.

If there are separate meters then presumably the supplies are separate and will need consolidating.

There will be business rates payable on the commercial part of the property and council tax payable on the resi part. An inspector from the valuation office will need to come round and see it is being used as one residence and reassess it for council tax on the whole.

All this assumes it has correctly been divided up in its current state and has the correct permissions, etc for the current uses.

SusieFlo Mon 15-Feb-16 22:53:19

Many thanks everyone. I think if we proceed with this place then we'll apply for planning consent to revert the house to 100% residential use and consolidate the utility supplies. It was originally built as a residence so with any luck we can just ask to revert back. (As far as I know, the current owner has done everything by the book).

glorious Tue 16-Feb-16 16:02:49

Not quite the same but I'm looking at converting a b and b back to residential. As we won't get a residential mortgage on a commercial property (which may also apply to yours depending on what it's used for) we are thinking we would need to exchange subject to planning (conditional contract) and apply for change of use ourselves. I'm not yet sure whether that will work - haven't spoken to lender yet.

Nationwide have some clear guidance on their website about residential mortgages for part commercial use which may help you.

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