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propertylawyer
propertylawyer, Solicitor
Category: Law
Satisfied Customers: 280
Experience:  Property Solicitor with expertise in commercial and residential property transactions.
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I'm one of seven freehold residents who share a communal

Resolved Question:

Hello., I'm one of seven freehold residents who share a communal garden. All the other residents have lived here from anywhere between 12 and 40 years and have put in 3 large sheds and 2 large log storage areas. They have informed me that all this space is now legally owned by them. Is this correct.
Submitted: 1 year ago.
Category: Law
Expert:  propertylawyer replied 1 year ago.

Hi

Which space are the other residents claiming as theirs - the land on which the sheds and log storage are built or the sheds and log store themselves?

The land is communal and owned by all residents. The sheds and store are yours. However, to build the sheds and store on communal land would require the consent and agreement of the other residents.

Expert:  propertylawyer replied 1 year ago.

Hi

Are the owners preventing you from using the sheds/store or the communal land itself?

Are you able to provide further information?

Who of the other residents has access/use of the sheds/store?

Do you know who built the sheds/store?

Customer: replied 1 year ago.
Hello. Thanks very much for your quick response, and sorry I couldn't get back to you earlier.Answers:-1. No's 24, 26, 32, 34 have each built their sheds.
2. Each shed is locked and I have no rights to them - the only people aloud to use them are the owners themselves.
3. No' 24 (a family solicitor) has informed all residents that she and the other shed owners now have a right to this land the sheds and logs are occupying due to the length of time they have been there - she quoted "Established rights"!!
4. This communal area is officially a 'Drying area' but hasn't been used for this purpose for the past 30 yrs, but as a lovely garden.... the gardener died and as a result the whole area was used as a dumping ground by all.
5. I moved here 8 months ago and have managed to clear the majority of waste and dilapidated outhouses to bring it back to what once was, instead of assisting me, No's 24 & 26 have erected two washing brollies immediately outside my house - I have been told that cannot move or touch them as they are private property..Kind regards. Lisa
Nb. I have a video of the area which I can't attach...
Expert:  propertylawyer replied 1 year ago.

Hi lisa

I would say that the family solicitor is incorrect. one may acquire a right by doing a particular thing over land for a continuous period of 20 years. so maybe she and the others have acquired the right to keep a shed on the land.

Potentially there could be an argument that they own the parcel of land their sheds sit on. But to argue adverse possession they would have establish an Intention to possess to the detriment and exclusion of the legal owner. I will assume here that the land is registered and as such such intention and possession must proceed uninterrupted for a period of 10 years. I think this is difficult to establish given that they are the owner already and have knowledge that it is communal and owned jointly with 6 others.

It could be difficult to do something about the sheds.

The washing lines/brollies themselves are private property belonging to the owner. Why have these been placed outside your property? Do they affect access?

Are there any entries in the registers of title relating to the use of the common land? You mentioned that it is a drying area, does the title deeds say anything else?

Customer: replied 1 year ago.
Hello. I'm a little confused... If these four households have had sheds on our shared freehold land for over 20 yrs, does this mean that they have a right to keep them and does this also means that the rest of us no longer own the relatively small piece of land they all sit on?The deeds state only that this land is an 'Drying area' and nothing else.Kind regards.
Lisa.
Expert:  propertylawyer replied 1 year ago.

Hi Lisa

Rights are established over a 20 year period. Possession can be obtained over a 10 year period.

They can probably claim a right to keep a shed and access it due to the length of time this has been going on for. As to acquiring possession i think this is more difficult to prove as there is specific criteria to satisfy.

Customer: replied 1 year ago.
Thank you for your help. Regards. Lisa.
Expert:  propertylawyer replied 1 year ago.

Hi Lisa

Thanks. If satisfied please accept / rate my response.

If this progresses and you want further advise please send me a further question and I will help out. Happy to chat it through on the phone too. Best wishes..

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