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wingrovebuyer, Senior Solicitor
Category: Property Law
Satisfied Customers: 737
Experience:  Bachelor of Laws (Honours); PG Diploma in Law; Member of ALA; 9 years' experience
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Hi,I own an office building that has been granted prior

Customer Question

Hi, I own an office building that has been granted prior approval consent to convert to residential use. This is part of new rules brought in last year. I intend to convert the building in to 10 apartments. The council's letter (attached) states that change of use to residential must occur on or before 30.5.16 and also that the decision relates solely to change of use and not alterations to it. The building has been completely stripped out and is in process of it's title being split to 10 units and for residential dwelling premises. My question is that if I complete building works to units at front of the building first will I be able to sell these once complete and then use funds forms ale to finish off the remaining areas. My concern is that a purchasers solicitor may say that the whole building must be completely converted first to comply with attached letters deadline of 30.5.16 but my hope is that the building is already a residential premises albeit kitchens/bathrooms etc yet to be fitted? Clarification on this would be great. Regards Ben

Submitted: 3 years ago.
Category: Property Law
Expert:  wingrovebuyer replied 3 years ago.

wingrovebuyer : Hello. The Council's letter wasn't attached. Can you tell me what is says with regard to the 2016 date please? Ie does it say works must be complete, or must have commenced (which is usual)?
JACUSTOMER-95bf3thg- :

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hopefully you can see attachment now - it says change of use to residential must commence. I take this to mean if we de-register the office for business rates etc and completely strip them out and commence building works, register new units for residential apartments with council, then we have classified the change of use. However, we ask the question as we may wish to finish some units before others and sell these before completing works on others (kitchens and bathroom yet to go in etc) and wish to make sure purchasers would not worry about planning issues upon conveyancing.

wingrovebuyer : He
wingrovebuyer : Hello, thanks.
wingrovebuyer : Ok, your gut feeling is correct - all you need to do is start the conversion works. They do not need to have been completed. Commencing the works will satisfy the deadline, and will lock down the change of use consent. Accordingly, you dont have to have complete all the units at the same time, meaning you can complete some, sell them, and finish the others. Hope this helps. Best, WB.
wingrovebuyer :

Hello. As I have answered your question, would you kindly leave a rating, or JA won't pay me for assisting you. Thanks! WB