Planning refused HMO permission – he did it anyway!

Planning refused HMO permission – he did it anyway!

0:02 AM, 21st June 2023, About 8 months ago 16

Text Size

Hello, I’d be really grateful for suggestions on what I could try next – Neighbouring property applied to planning for a change of use from residential to HMO (we’re an Article 4 area) and the council quite rightly, refused two times. Subsequently, the same owner went ahead and did it anyway and even registered for an HMO licence.

Now the man at the neighbouring property has built a one-bedroom flat at the bottom of his garden and rented that out too (needless to say without planning permission). I informed Planning Enforcement of this breach in Feb 2023 (had to due to excessive nuisance issues) but since then I can’t get them to update me even though their website says it’s something they commit to do.

I had one email at the beginning to confirm they’d received my notification. Still, since then I’ve persistently emailed, phoned, and spoken to planning’s receptionist asking to pass on messages and left voice messages for many people in the department but nobody ever replies.

In the end, I went through the council’s formal complaints procedure which has a 10-day timeframe to liaise with planning enforcement and come back to me. The time elapsed and I didn’t hear a peep out of them so I chased them again, they confirmed receipt but now another 10 days have elapsed and still nothing from them. Apparently, 20 days are reserved for complex complaints (but mine is that I merely want someone to reply to me!) but I’m past 20 days now anyway.

Any ideas on where I go from here?

Welly


Share This Article


Comments

SAM UK

7:12 AM, 21st June 2023, About 8 months ago

The USA Congress.

GlanACC

7:31 AM, 21st June 2023, About 8 months ago

Your MP should certainly be able to get some action (we all think they are useless but they do some good local work)

Paul B

7:33 AM, 21st June 2023, About 8 months ago

Lobby your local ward Councillors. You can find their details on the council Website.

GlanACC

7:44 AM, 21st June 2023, About 8 months ago

As a last resort can also complain to the Local Government Ombudsman (Google it)

Tim Rogers

9:01 AM, 21st June 2023, About 8 months ago

All of the above, but also keep a accurate log of phone calls, time spent, (evaluate the cost of your time - normally your working hourly rate), expenses etc. Once every month or 3 months initiate small claims court proceeding to reclaim these, it concentrates minds wonderfully

GlanACC

9:10 AM, 21st June 2023, About 8 months ago

Reply to the comment left by Tim Rogers at 21/06/2023 - 09:01
You would have to check this, I have something in the back of my mind where you can't use the small claims court to sue a crown agency, don't know if it applies to councils. You can certainly sue them if you go through a solicitor, but that might not be economically viable.

Martin Thomas

9:42 AM, 21st June 2023, About 8 months ago

Reply to the comment left by GlanACC at 21/06/2023 - 09:10
I'm fairly certain that local councils are NOT crown agencies so you should be ok to sue.

DAMIEN RAFFERTY

10:26 AM, 21st June 2023, About 8 months ago

Sorry but phone calls are not good.
Email and write with letter and stamp.
State what has happened and how you have complained to the council, planning etc
Include your local councillors and CC your MP.
This will get the hopeful result you want.

Tim Rogers

10:29 AM, 21st June 2023, About 8 months ago

Reply to the comment left by GlanACC at 21/06/2023 - 09:10I have found that the instigation of the process, with requests for documents to be produced prior to going to court, tends to have a beneficial effect. Particularly if you name senior individuals, who, should it go to court, will then need to appear or be held in contempt.

RoseD

10:37 AM, 21st June 2023, About 8 months ago

As always good direct replies here as to options but let me enlighten you as to how this type of scenario played out for me. Same procedure thru council who did nothing over a two year period other than contact said individual to apply for planning which council said they might/might not get despite previous applications. It is down to you to pursue as a private matter thru a solicitor (they know only too well most won't do this which is why such persons go ahead and do what they want). Unless said buildings are a real concern to to the environment council simply DO NOT follow up or care about the rules they put in place. Sadly made much worse since COVID (for whatever reason) and funds. It costs to put enforcement demolition in place. If it's only you 'complaining' you will not be taken seriously. Building in my situation is still in place and functioning after 6 years so no chance of change now. Best advice I can give is simple....move! Less costly than the legal route...which you might not win and for your mental health and wellbeing.

1 2

Leave Comments

In order to post comments you will need to Sign In or Sign Up for a FREE Membership

or

Don't have an account? Sign Up

Landlord Tax Planning Book Now