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Hello and thank you for your question. I will be very pleased to assist you. I'm a practicing lawyer in England with over 10 years experience.
May I clarify if they have applied for planning permission please?
Is his building on which he is extending built right up to the boundary line between your properties?
Thanks. may I clarify please, is that "yes" to both questions?
Sorry, I missed the first question. I don't know whether they have applied fior planning permission. They have written to the Freeholder who asked for a copy of their plans but as yet they have not replied to the Freeholder . The property on which thery propose to add another floor is a boundary wall on my patio.
Thanks. No problem. You refer to a freeholder above. Does your neighbour own a flat or is this a leasehold house?
We are all Leaseholders with varying length of leases.
Thanks. So are you the ground floor leaseholder and the neighbour the chap above you?
I am the ground floor leaseholder. My neighbour's flat is double storey with a small lean-to which is single storey. This is the part that adjoins my patio and which he wishes to build to the level of his existing roof. In total we are 4 leasehold flats. (1 on the ground floor, 1 on the 2nd floor 1 on the 3rd floor and a maisonette which has a Lounge and kitchen on the ground floor and 2 bedrooms on the second floor. This part seems to have been an extension to the original mansion.
Thank you. Just one or two more questions then we should be there. Has your neighbour yet served upon you a party wall notice? Is your patio demised to you under your lease or do you just have a right to use it?
The patio forms part of the property demised to me under my Lease. My neighbour has not served any notices on me. He informed me of his intention to extend the ares of his flat by adding another floor and I informed him how this would adversely affect me and that I would oppose an planning permission. My Freeholder was approached but has not as yet received the building plans. Does my 125 years Lease protect me in any, or would refusing to give permission for scaffolding to be erected on my property be sufficienty effective?
Thanks. If the patio is demised to you then unless there is a provision in your lease that allows for other leaseholders access to the same for development then the upstairs neighbour would have no right to erect anything on your patio subject as follows. Most leases contain rights of access and so on for the purposes of maintenance but it would be very unusual in deed if your lease permitted access for the purposes of development for your neighbour.
There are no clauses in my Lease allowing access for the purposes of development. Indeed allowing access at all.
In order to proceed the neighbour would have to 1. obtain planning permission 2. obtain consent from the freeholder which may involve the payment of a premium if he is extending into previously undemised space. 3. Serve a party wall notice on all other tenants in the building including you none of whom including you have to agree. 4. If any of you do not agree then a surveyor has to be appointed to represent any party that does not agree to negotiate a party wall award to take into account adjoining owners concerns. In short this is going to be potentially expensive to pursue.
There is provision in the Party Wall Act to provide for access to adjoining land (namely your patio) for the purposes of development. If he were to successfully negotiate all of the above hurdles and obtain a party wall award as above, then a right exists for him (subject to the party wall award) to erect temporary scaffolding on your patio in order to carry out development. However there are all of the above steps which at any stage you can object to. Unless and until he achieves all of the above, he will not be able to erect anything on your patio without your permission.
Thank you very much Joshua. I doubt that they would want to incur heavy expenses and it seems that I am reasonally covered.Is it possible to save a copy of our texting? This would give me a hard copy to which to refer. I am prepared topay an additional feem for thisnfacility
Unless they have a reasonably significant budget, they will likely be looking at 1500-5000 fee just to comply with the party wall act measures. The landlord may be able to charge them a premium if he is extending into space not demised to him which could escalate costs further and of course there are planning fees of several hundred pounds so costs will not be insignificant. This could be enough to kill the proposal from what you say in its own right.
If not then you will obviously keep your eye out for the planning application should it be submitted, and make your objections known and perhaps rally neighbours to your support and in addition make your views known to the landlord and finally to your surveyor should they get as far as the party wall procedures.
Is there anything else I can help you with?
No Joshua a
Joshua you have done a magnificient job. Thank you very much. One day start up on your own.
A pleasure. If I can assist any further as the situation develops please do no hesitate to let me know.
I certainly will come back to you should I need any further advice. Have a great life, it's the only one you've got. Cheerio
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