Establishing Loft Space Ownership

by Readers Question

4 years ago

Establishing Loft Space Ownership

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Establishing Loft Space Ownership

I bought 3 bedroom leasehold flat 6 years ago which included the loft space. Establising Loft Space Ownership

Three years ago, 4 leaseholders collectively bought the freehold of which I purchased a third of the freehold.

Recently, one of the leaseholder who owns a share of freehold has indicated the loft space which I have owned for many years is in fact not included in the demise of my property.

Clearly, I am a little disappointed my solicitor did not pick this up during the conveyancing period.

Could any one tell me if there is an established ownership or use of the loft space after so many years?

Many Thanks!!

Mark Mondell



Comments

Mark Alexander

4 years ago

Hi Mark

Why would your conveyancing solicitor have been expected to pick up on use of the lost space?

Was it mentioned in the sale contract?

If it was then you can bring a negligence claim against your solicitor. It's much easier and a lot less expensive than you might think. Have a free 15 minute chat with this barrister with our compliments >>> http://www.property118.com/member/?id=1945

I don't know anything about claiming established ownership of loft space but he might, and if he doesn't though, he will know another specialist barrister who will. His specialities are contract, negligence and criminal law but there are property specialists within his chambers.
.

Michael Barnes

4 years ago

[I am not a lawyer]
Is access to the loft space within your property or in the common areas?

If it is within your property and your lease does not mention any rights of access to it for freeholder or other lease holders, then I would think that others have no claim to it.

Adrian Jones

4 years ago

Reply to the comment left by "Mark Alexander" at "18/12/2014 - 09:27":

I'm interested in this as I have two top floor flats. I'd always assumed loft space was owned jointly.

Presumably if you take ownership of the roof space you also assume full liability for roof repairs?

4 years ago

Reply to the comment left by "Michael Barnes" at "18/12/2014 - 12:26":

Thanks for your comment Michael. Access to the loft is exclusively through my flat...this is why I did not realise the loft is not necessarily included in the demise of my flat. No one else has right of access for the freeholder or the lease holders. I have heard if you can establish 12 years of access, the freeholder would have no claim....but not sure.

My other concern is if having exclusive access to the loft some how causes a breach of freeholder covenants.

Cheers, Mark

Michael Barnes

4 years ago

Reply to the comment left by "Adrian Jones" at "18/12/2014 - 13:41":

roof space and roof are two separate things, just as external walls and your flat are two different things.

Michael Barnes

4 years ago

Reply to the comment left by "Mark Mondell" at "18/12/2014 - 13:50":

If there is nothing in thr lease about others having access to the loft, then it appears reasonable to me that you are free to use it for storage (but probably not as living space).

the 12 year rule (or thereabouts) applies to land; I don't know about parts of a property.

I don't see how freeholder's covenants could be breached: the freeholder initially arranged the property such that loft access is via your property.

Colin Dartnell

4 years ago

We used to own a penthouse flat which had three walk in areas of the sloping roof space which were used as part of the flat, the house had been converted to flats and on the original plans for the conversion the flat marked in red did not include the roof spaces. No one ever contested the use as they were not able to enter the roof space from any communal area.

Do you have a copy of the plans or deeds which should outline your property. The other leaseholder must have or they wouldn't be contesting it now.

The question is what do you have to gain by owning it, unless you wanted to extend into it. Otherwise just for storage why should they worry, it would be your ceiling that fell down if you overloaded it.


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