License to Alter on work done by previous owner

License to Alter on work done by previous owner

by Readers Question

Guest Author

11:14 AM, 2nd February 2017, About 7 years ago 6

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I purchased a leasehold flat 7 years ago which had been renovated a bathroom had been split to house a separate WC and wooden floors had been laid throughout the flat. It was on a short lease and I extended the lease.Licence to alter

At the time of purchase my solicitor didn´t pick up on the fact that the small layout change (it is only noticeable by a line dividing) and also that the lease says no wooden floors and that there wasn´t a License to Alter for this work.

I am now selling and we are about to exchange and the buyers solicitor has asked if we have any License to Alter for this, we don´t.

The owners of the flats are in the process of purchasing the Freehold (most of which have wooden floors in their flats!)

How do I stand on the License to Alter can I tell the buyer that I am selling it without and if they want to follow through with a retrospective License it´s down to them?

Is 7 years over a threashold of coming up with this paperwork?



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Neil Patterson

11:18 AM, 2nd February 2017, About 7 years ago

Sorry I don't know the answer Melanie, others may, but have you also tried the Leasehold Advisory Service? >>

Paul Shears

18:36 PM, 2nd February 2017, About 7 years ago

If push comes to shove, can't you just put down some new cheap carpets & underlay?

Melanie Block

20:01 PM, 2nd February 2017, About 7 years ago

Reply to the comment left by "Paul Shears" at "02/02/2017 - 18:36":

Yes I could but it´s not just the floors it´s the bathroom alteration that the previous guy did that is the main problem.

Steven Burman

11:01 AM, 3rd February 2017, About 7 years ago

Melanie, as you did not carry out the alteration I would stay quiet and not let on that you are aware of any alterations. After all, they were not disclosed to you so why should you be expected to know about them?

The wooden flooring issue is a common one. Again, I would stay quiet and see what happens. Is anyone really going to enforce the 'no wooden floors' restriction given that so many ofther leaseholders have them?

Paul Green

12:27 PM, 3rd February 2017, About 7 years ago

Can't your solicitors buy you an indemnity policy. I lot of houses have building work with no planning permission for internal work. I.E no building regulations certificate. This indemnity policy covers you for claims against you in the future. Solicitors use them all the time . I purchased one on my last sale. They are really cheap because no one hardly claims. Ask you solicitors or read about them on the web. Can't explain the legality of them just pointing you in a possible direction...


12:56 PM, 5th February 2017, About 7 years ago

I didn't realise that such a small internal change would require permission! I was also wondering about a timescale that this would fall away, but it's unlikely to be under ten years. But by the same token, surely you should have a claim as to why your solicitors didn't pick it up. Get them to arrange & pay for the indemnity insurance, given their neglect.

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