Neighbour dispute!! Help!!(18 Posts)
Hi, first time on here but have read some other threads and feel I need some advice!
6 months ago we bought our end of terrace house.
When viewing the estate agent mentioned there was a right of way around the outside of our property (so on right next to my property not down the end of the garden) I was a bit unsettled about it and asked the solicitor to look into it too find out exactly what the deal was.
They came back and said there is NO legal right of way around our property and it may have been a courtesy agreement between the people that lived here 2 years before us, said we can put a locked gate up and not provide access but to be careful about upsetting neighbours because we shouldn't start falling out.
A couple of days ago I let my dog into the garden for her to come back with a man I have never met saying he is working 2 doors down and she had wondered through because he had left all the gates open. I explained he cannot go through my garden as there is no ROW, the lady that lives their came out and proceeded to tell me it did exist and it is in her deeds.
They can't find their deeds nor any proof that the ROW exists and as far as I'm concerned they are trespassing if the go on my property. We have both been on the phone to the council who have no idea what to do but are having the legal team look into it.
I was wondering if anyone could give advice as to where I stand in this situation as there is no clear guide lines on line.
Sorry for the long post, thanks in advance!
Go back to your solicitor - if it's not on your deeds, then I'd say there's no right of way, regardless of what anyone believes. Solicitor should be able to prove that.
There's unlikely to be anything written in the deeds but that doesn't mean that an easement can't exist. You really need a legal opinion, which it sounds as if you arranged when buying the house. Is it worth asking the solicitor whether they would provide their opinion in writing if they haven't done so already?
There can be an established "right of way", or easement, if the neighbours have been using this route for over 20 years. If it is only 2 years, they cannot claim it as a right. It may well not be on the deeds if it is a right established after 20 years because no-one has set it up formally. They would need to prove they have used it for over 20
years, I believe, but go back to your solicitor for clarification. Lots of terraced houses do have this right established though.
I think my husband has it in writing that there is no right of way and they told me themselves they haven't used it in a couple of years and the neighbour that we are not attached to told us he hasn't seen anyone use it for a fair few years.
A massive part of continuing with buying the property was because there's nothing written in the deeds. If they were going to say about an easement would they have to take us to court over it if I refuse to allow it?
I'm not saying I will take away the tiny gate but I will be putting a bigger gate so my dog can't jump over it and a gate around the side and locking both for security reasons but they will have to ask if they can have access which I don't think is being unreasonable?
Why do they want access? What does it give them? Is it a shortcut to somewhere?
but why is there a gate between the gardens if there is no right of way?
They only want to get into their gardens and they're saying until the decking got to dangerous to walk in (in our garden, it hasn't been looked after for about 4 years so it's really slippery) the bin men would walk around the back of my house to collect everyone's bins which I am not having. They're bins are all out the front and the bin men are fine. She's moaning that she has to take her rubbish bag through the front of the flat but that's not my problem and if she lived in a block of flats she'd have to do it anyway.
They were explaining to me that there was only ever a thin wire fence between the gardens until they put the fence in, so they chose to put a gate in not the council or anyone official.
I just thought something like this had to be in your deeds to make it legal?
You can download your neighbours deeds from Land Registry. We did this in the past when something arose with a neighbour and we wanted to see if their deeds mirrored ours.
It will cost you £7, but I would get your immediate neighbour and the one further down to be safe.
I have said download but I think you can download your own and any other property comes by post.
You can download a copy of your neighbour's title register and plan from the gov.uk Land Registry website. It costs £6 for both documents. As you specifically asked your solicitor about it, they will probably have already done this, but if you have a look and there is nothing documented that may reassure you and be something to show the neighbours. A ROW can be established through years of use as a pp has stated. My guess is that if there is nothing documented the problem will go away. Do not mention in conversation that the neighbours will have to prove they have used the route for X years, just show them what is documented if it helps you.
@JungleExplorer you can download the title register and title plan for any registered property. It's instant. Cost is £3 per document. It is only unregistered land you cannot get details of from the Land Registry.
in that case dont replace a gate with a bigger one just put a fence up. end of discussion.
How old is the house? I'm quite surprised by the solicitor's advice. It doesn't need to be on the deeds for there to be a right of way and if these are old houses a right of way of that sort is very common. If that's the case you're mad to have bought this house with the intention of trying to ignore/obstruct your neighbours' rights, it will bring you no end of bad blood and potentially legal action.
Unless these are council houses the council have no part in this. The solicitor who did your conveyancing would be best placed to advise on this. If you're looking for free advice you could try the gardenlaw forum.
Here's a similar situation: www.gardenlaw.co.uk/phpBB2/viewtopic.php?f=8&t=20945
I'd stand firm if I were you. The onus is on them to prove it exists which it sounds like they can't do. You need your garden to be secure so just repeat that it isn't your problem and they can't use it.
I'm not sure how old the houses are but ours is ex council and the man next door is still council and the woman in the middle of the terrace (who this has all started with) was ex council as well. So I was hoping they would know if it was an agreement that was old but they're looking into everything.
The council also did say to me that if it's not in my deeds then it won't exist and could have been an agreement with the people that lived here before us or that her access could go in the other direction towards the other 2 terrace houses.
All she has in writing is that she has a right of access through her front garden because she shares it with the 2 houses either side of her.
Thanks for the link! I'll have a read!
Does anyone else have rude neighbours..
a few of mine say hello we live in flats but the ones underneath are dam right rude.. the girlfriend always gives me dirty looks the partner says hi. She gives me a death stare all the time it makes me feel uncomfortable when coming into my own home, have to go past there door to go upstairs sometimes she will be at the door standing there staring huffing at me, I don't understand what her problem is. We both had new baby around the same time and she just went all horrible after, She has other kids and so do I. We used to chat briefly when we all moved in here but now it just seems so anti. suppose there is no pleasing everybody. I know mn love neighbour threads lol
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