8:03 AM, 20th May 2019, About 2 years ago 27
Hi everyone, We are in the process of buying a property and we have just found out that the loft conversion (into a bedroom) was done without planning permission or building regulations. This work was done probably over 25 years ago (windows are dated 1993) well before the current owners moved in.
I asked my solicitors if this bedroom would still be considered fit for purpose and they confirmed, verbally, that it would. I find it difficult to believe. I would not want to pay for the price of a 3 bedrooms bungalow and selling it as 2 beds one in the future. Unsure if an estate agent can market a property as a 3-bedroom bungalow if it turns out that one of the bedroom was a loft conversion without planning permission granted and building regulations approved? Could the use of the room as the bedroom for over 25 years change anything about it? I have read things about the 4 / 10 years rule, but I don’t think this could apply here.
We would also have all sort of other issues:
Risk of law enforcement by the Council (even if it is very unlikely)
We can’t guarantee the structure is adequate / the extension meets building regs
Could affect our mortgage
Insurance company could refuse to pay out under building insurance policy
Could impact the selling price as future buyer might not be prepared to take the risk
Our options so far if we wish to proceed, seem to be taking an indemnity insurance (not too keen on it as it doe not cover much) or to get a certificate of regularisation from the seller (if built after 1985 which is unlikely) which consist in an intrusive very long and complex work which is very likely to be refused.
Can you see any other options?
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