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Property/DIY

Would you help someone take their neighbours to a Land Tribunal?

13 replies

Fimbo · 24/01/2008 10:33

Long story but will cut it short.

Last April we pulled out of the dream house we were buying just shortly before exchange due to restrictive covenants on the property. We wanted/needed to do various things to extend the property to our requirements but the neighbours said no as they had the power to do so because of these covenants. (it wouldn't have affected them in anyway).

The vendor of the property we wanted to buy, was as it turned out a bit economical with the truth about her neighbours when we questioned things like the shared driveway - she said she had never been asked to pay anything towards its upkeep - the neighbours told my dh differently. In fact the road is still waiting to be tarmaced after the neighbours had alterations done to their property.

Now she has written to us (we assume she got our new address through her workplace as we rented a property for a while from the place where she worked - which I am a bit cross a bout but can't think where else she got it from unless our solicitor gave it to her) to ask us to provide a written statement to help her case to get the covenants lifted, as she has already lost another 2 buyers.

I haven't spoken to dh yet, but I jump between wanting to help her sell
her property and to tell her to take a running jump.

Arrgh what would you do?

OP posts:
Hecate · 24/01/2008 10:39

If it doesn't cost anything, I'd write it. It must be a pain for her really. Ok, she shouldn't have fibbed, but think how desperate she must be to sell!

If it has no possible comeback on you, legally or financially (I don't see how it can btw, but that's just my criteria for helping out strangers!! ) then why not help her out?

claricebeansmum · 24/01/2008 10:40

I wouldn't get involved personally. If she wants evidence of lost sales she can get it from estate agents

TheBlonde · 24/01/2008 10:41

I wouldn't bother helping

Fimbo · 24/01/2008 10:44

Her neighbour walks his dog passed me everyday and we sort of nod. I also have to walk past the property every day and I don't want repercussions.

OP posts:
ConnorTraceptive · 24/01/2008 10:54

I wouldn't get involved either, although I do feel sorry for her

chopchopbusybusy · 24/01/2008 11:00

I wouldn't get involved either. Agree that the estate agent can provide her with details of lost sales.

Can covenants be lifted anyway? I thought once they were there that was it, although I do know that some have time limits (normally on new builds).

Fimbo · 24/01/2008 12:24

I am not sure if the covenants can be lifted - they have been in place since 1975!

The property is to the side of the neighbours house which to be fair is massive and they have spent loads of money on it, its probably now worth in excess of £1 million.

Why the owners of the bigger house just don't buy it for themselves I don't know as clearly they really don't want anyone to be there. It probably actually suits them that a woman living on her own has it, because she is hardly likely to make lots of noise unlike a couple living there with children.

OP posts:
Karen999 · 24/01/2008 12:27

What does she want you to put in your statement?

wannaBe · 24/01/2008 12:35

I wouldn't get involved tbh.

If she's losing sales, then presumably she's not telling prospective buyers that these covenants are even in place, otherwise they wouldn't be putting in offers on her property in the first place.

What does she expect you to say? the estate agent can provide the details of the lost sales, but other than that there's nothing else you can provide to back up her case really.

Fimbo · 24/01/2008 12:54

Quote from her letter:-

"My solicitor thinks that it would considerably help my case if you would agree to provide a written witness statement giving details of the alterations you proposed and your conversation with Mr X."

Ironically my dh is a solicitor also...

OP posts:
Fizzylemonade · 24/01/2008 14:05

I don't think you can change or remove covenants, they are there to protect the home owner and any neighbour from someone doing something that would impact on their lives.

ie my property has a convenant that says you cannot run a business from it, even from a shed, even if it is unpaid. This prevents me from doing it but also gives me peace of mind that no one else can do it ie have loads of cars turning up or having a taxi rank outside your house.

I wouldn't help if I were you. She lied to you and you made plans for that house. There is nothing in it for you. If she did need help then her solicitor would have written to you.

lalalonglegs · 24/01/2008 14:38

I think they can be removed if they are seen to be unfairly harsh or restrictive but it's a long process and I'm not sure that I would particularly want to help someone who tried to sell me a pup in the first place. What does your dh say?

Swedes · 25/01/2008 12:15

Surely she could approach the estate agent you were buying with and get his sworn statement that a purchaser (you) pulled out because of xxxxxx? I take the view that it would be best not to get involved it a private dispute.

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