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James Mather
James Mather,
Category: Property Law
Satisfied Customers: 22629
Experience:  Senior Partner at Berkson Wallace
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My house was bought 16 years ago freehold but owned 50% with

Customer Question

My house was bought 16 years ago freehold but owned 50% with Housing Association.
We have never seen the Deeds to the property as we were told that The mortgage provider held these or the housing ass. Consequently we didn't know that the surrounding land that our semi detached house sits on does not belong to us. It belongs to Hillcrest Maintenance Co. There are buildings next to us that are flats that are either rented or are bought Leasehold and who pay maintenance to the said company. We pay an amount towards any maintenance to do with the right of way to our property, such as drains and the private road that runs at the back of the property. The property is three stories, It is on a hill, the front access is on one road and the back access at a lower level is connected to another road. the front entrance has a cement "gangplank" to the front door with a split level garden one side. The top floor consists kitchen, lounge and toilet. Bedrooms and bathroom on middle floor, then another flight of stairs to basement area to the garage and lower hallway. We have car parking space at the rear of the property. Consequently as l am an amputee we have decked over the "gankplank" and tiered garden, lowered the kerb (with local highways permission) so that I can use this area to keep my mobility scooter, otherwise it would mean l would have to go down two flights of stairs, open the garage door and lift it up to be able to get my scooter out, and this l can't do. We have always kept a camper or a caravan out the back and the previous owner likewise. It is well out of the way and does not impose on anyone else. This is over a period of 26 years! Now we have been told to remove the caravan and take down the decking as we are trespassing on Hillcrest Maintenance land. It states in their Deeds "that no caravan house on wheels or other mobile or quasi-mobile dwelling, trailer etc., can be parked on their land". As we have lived and used the land for 16 years, which they have always known about, l can't understand why they would do this. Have l any rights at all?
Submitted: 4 years ago.
Category: Property Law
Expert:  James Mather replied 4 years ago.

Hello, I am Law Denning and I am a practising solicitor in a High Street practice. I have been an expert on this website in UK law since 2008. During that time, as you appreciate, I have answered thousands of questions from satisfied users on a variety of subjects.

Because we are all in practice with clients and court and other users, I might not always respond in minutes, particularly evenings and weekends. Please bear with me in that case

It is my pleasure to try and assist you with this today.

Has anyone else used the area of land in question that you park on? did anyone ever say that you could park there?
Has anyone ever objected?
Do you accept that they own the land?
Customer: replied 4 years ago.

No one else but us have used this land.

We have permission to park one car.

No one has ever objected.

I accept they own the land.

Have we any rights, considering we have used this land for 16 years? The owner lives in the same road and must know about me. My husband has spoken to the women and warned her about the dust the builders might create when doing the pointing.

Expert:  James Mather replied 4 years ago.

You acquire no rights I am afraid if you parked there with permission however long you have done it for, sorry.

It is 20 years without consent or objection to acquire an easement and 10 years to acquire adverse possession.

They can give you reasonable notice to quit and there is nothing you can do based on the facts that you give.

I appreciate that this isn’t the answer that you want but there is no point in me misleading you.

Does that answer the question?

Can I help further?

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Customer: replied 4 years ago.

Yes, we are told we have a right to park one vehicle, our car, but evidently we cannot park anything else on their land without consent, which we didn't know we had to have for parking our caravan out back and also to deck over the garden to suit my needs. These areas have always been in use by ourselves since living in our property for 16 years. There has never been any complaint about this up until now for some reason or other.

Expert:  James Mather replied 4 years ago.

Can I answer any further points?