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Aston Lawyer
Aston Lawyer, Solicitor
Category: Law
Satisfied Customers: 10344
Experience:  Solicitor LLB (Hons) 23 years of experience in Conveyancing and Property Law
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I am considering selling my flat (I'm a leaseholder) due to

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I am considering selling my flat (I’m a leaseholder) due to months of unrelenting late night noise from my upstairs neighbours. In the summer, the landlord of the flat above reconfigured his property from a 2 bedroom to a 3 bedroom (by dividing the large lounge room in two). His new tenants then moved in, and the natural room of choice to be used as their lounge was what used to be the main bedroom. Consequently, the lounge above is now directly above my main bedroom. The tenants stay up late into the nights in their lounge room and make a lot of noise which keeps me and my family awake. I have raised the noise issue with my neighbours on numerous occasions, but to no avail. I have also raised the issue with their landlord requesting that he return his property to its original design and get it properly soundproofed. The landlord of the upstairs property has refused to deal with his tenants or to return his property to its original configuration or get it soundproofed. I have written numerous emails to the landlord of the upstairs property. I have also kept a noise disturbance log for about 4 months which I’ve sent to the landlord to make him aware of the issues. After months of trying to resolve this issue amicably, I am considering raising the issue with the local council and/or selling my flat and moving elsewhere.
I have only spoken with the local authority noise abatement team once when the neighbours were having a party, however the party finished before the Environmental Health Officer could arrive (so I cancelled them). I have not made any formal complaint with the council or provided them with the history of noise disturbances I’ve been experiencing.
I have a number of questions I would appreciate answered.
1. Since I have not formally complained to the council about this long term problem, will I be obliged to disclose the noise issue to any potential buyers of my home?
2. If I decide to get the council involved, and they decide that the noise from the upstairs flat is not unreasonably loud, will I be obliged to disclose the noise issue to any potential buyers of my home?
3. If I am obliged to disclose this long term noise problem, at what stage of the selling process must I disclose this information?
4. If I am obliged to disclose this long term noise problem, by how much is it likely to reduce the value of my flat when I sell?
5. I know that the council can deal with the tenants if their noise is considered unreasonable – can the council also take action to force the landlord of the upstairs flat to reconfigure it back into a 2 bedroom (and possibly get his floor soundproofed), since I believe this is a significant part of the problem?
Submitted: 2 years ago.
Category: Law
Expert:  Aston Lawyer replied 2 years ago.

Hello and thanks for using Just Answer.

My name is ***** ***** am happy to assist you with your enquiry.

1. I am afraid you certainly will have to disclose this matter to your Buyer. Once a Sale has been agreed, your Solicitor will send you a Property information Form, which forms part of the Contract documentation that is forwarded to the Buyers Solicitors. One of the questions on the form asks "Have there been any disputes or complaints regarding this property or a property nearby? If Yes, please provide details".

If you weren't to disclose this issue, then the buyer would be entitled to sue you for Misrepresentation.

2.You will need to disclose all correspondence you have had with the Council.

3. As mentioned above, the information will be submitted with the Contract at the onset of the transaction.

4. I can't really answer this, as a property is only worth what someone is prepared to pay fo rit. In my experience, no Solicitor will advise a Buyer client to proceed with a purchase if ther eis any kind of ongoing dispute. It is therefore very much a case of assessing the position as and when you have placed the property on the market.

5. The Council do not hold any powers to demand that the internal layout is changed/soundproofing is installed, I'm afraid.

I hope this assists and sets out the legal position.

Kind Regards

AL

Aston Lawyer, Solicitor
Category: Law
Satisfied Customers: 10344
Experience: Solicitor LLB (Hons) 23 years of experience in Conveyancing and Property Law
Aston Lawyer and other Law Specialists are ready to help you
Customer: replied 2 years ago.

For Aston Lawyer:


 


Dear Al,


 


Thanks so much for your prompt answer - it was very helpful and I really appreciate it. If you don't mind, I have a few further questions to ask with regards to our situation.


 


1. Whilst we are the long leaseholders of our flat, the flat above us doesn't have a lease and it's rented out on short term contracts to tenants. Consequently, the freeholder is the person responsible for the letting of the flat above. Our leasehold states that we are entitled to "peaceful enjoyment" of our property without interference from the freeholder. Given that the freeholder redesigned the flat above, placing the lounge directly above our main bedroom, can it be argued that the freeholder is interfering with our peaceful enjoyment of our home? If so, what rights do we have aginst the freeholder?


 


2. If we do have rights against the freeholder for his interference in our peaceful enjoyment, what would be the best way to raise the issue with the freeholder? Formal letter written by us, formal letter written by a solicitor on our behalf? etc?


 


3. If we do have rights and we raise the matter of interference with the freeholder, what is our next best course of action if the freeholder ignores our correspondence?


 


Thanks again so much for your help.

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