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  • FIRST POST
    • Chopperoo
    • By Chopperoo 8th Jan 18, 2:36 PM
    • 6Posts
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    Chopperoo
    Building regs on a new build holiday let
    • #1
    • 8th Jan 18, 2:36 PM
    Building regs on a new build holiday let 8th Jan 18 at 2:36 PM
    We agreed to purchase a holiday let (1 of 5 being built) last summer. The 2-bed property was marketed as having a jack & jill bathroom, downstairs bedroom and second bedroom on a mezzanine floor. The seller stated (verbally, and I have this on email and via text message) that all elements of the layout were negotiable. We paid a small deposit to secure the plot (as requested and agreed by estate agent/seller).

    The site was originally due to be completed at the end of September and then it was delayed until the end of December (however this info was only shared when we asked for updates) - it's now due to be finished in Spring. It transpired that the seller hadn't had the building regs signed off and we were told that the spec needed to be changed to meet safety requirements, however this was all at his expense (and all items improved the spec; fire safety system; insulation and escape point). At no point was it stated that the layout had changed.

    The seller has now circulated a Building Regulations Notice which apparently sets out the layout - the position of the kitchen, bathroom (no longer jack & jill) and stairs are all set out on the plan and apparently these are non negotiable. A second bedroom could be put in simply by adding partition walls but this wouldn't be a particularly nice layout (infront of the kitchen) and it would also impinge on the view.

    My question (and I am awaiting contact from my solicitor, although I had asked her to check some of these points in November and she hadn't, so I'm slightly frustrated / panicked) is -
    > should he have consulted with me on our requirements re. layout when he was liaising with building regs?

    I feel that the property now is very different to what we agreed to buy. We have spent a lot of money over the last few months preparing to furnish this (so that we were ready to let it as soon as it was completed). Part of me wants to renegotiate on price but if not, we would need to pull out as the potential income (for a 1 bed) won't stack up. Would we potentially have any opportunity to recoup money spent so far?

    Thanks for reading.....
Page 1
    • Comms69
    • By Comms69 8th Jan 18, 2:43 PM
    • 1,742 Posts
    • 1,591 Thanks
    Comms69
    • #2
    • 8th Jan 18, 2:43 PM
    • #2
    • 8th Jan 18, 2:43 PM
    I'd be concerned that pulling out would be very expensive indeed.


    And that the builder is a one man band by the sounds of it!


    Negotiation is clearly the positions.
    • eddddy
    • By eddddy 8th Jan 18, 2:48 PM
    • 5,637 Posts
    • 5,339 Thanks
    eddddy
    • #3
    • 8th Jan 18, 2:48 PM
    • #3
    • 8th Jan 18, 2:48 PM
    We paid a small deposit to secure the plot (as requested and agreed by estate agent/seller).
    Originally posted by Chopperoo
    What were the terms of the deposit/reservation agreement? (Presumably it was not an irrevocable agreement to buy the property.)

    If it was a major developer, their reservation agreements usually allow you to get your deposit back, if there are significant changes in the plan/spec.

    If your developer has (very foolishly) made it a term of the reservation agreement that paying a deposit gives you the right to specify changes to the layout, then you may have a case for claiming damages for breach of contract.
    • ProDave
    • By ProDave 8th Jan 18, 3:14 PM
    • 516 Posts
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    ProDave
    • #4
    • 8th Jan 18, 3:14 PM
    • #4
    • 8th Jan 18, 3:14 PM
    What is the size of the building and method of construction?

    What makes it a "holiday home" rather than a potential permanent home?

    i.e. what I am getting at, is it a souped up park home on a holiday site?
    • Chopperoo
    • By Chopperoo 8th Jan 18, 3:30 PM
    • 6 Posts
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    Chopperoo
    • #5
    • 8th Jan 18, 3:30 PM
    • #5
    • 8th Jan 18, 3:30 PM
    Thanks eddddy.
    It isn't a major developer. It's an individual who is project managing it themselves, with subcontractors (architect, groundworks and building). The holding deposit was non-refundable although there weren't terms set out. However as I said, changes to the layout were specified verbally and I also have this via email and text message).
    • Doozergirl
    • By Doozergirl 8th Jan 18, 3:35 PM
    • 24,212 Posts
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    Doozergirl
    • #6
    • 8th Jan 18, 3:35 PM
    • #6
    • 8th Jan 18, 3:35 PM
    Who checked that your changes to the layout were acceptable to Building Control?
    Everything that is supposed to be in heaven is already here on earth.
    • Chopperoo
    • By Chopperoo 8th Jan 18, 3:38 PM
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    Chopperoo
    • #7
    • 8th Jan 18, 3:38 PM
    • #7
    • 8th Jan 18, 3:38 PM
    Thanks ProDave -
    The planning permission specifies all year round occupation but not as a main residence, holiday purposes only.
    Wood construction - ground floor is approx. 61 square meters and mezzanine is about 46 square meters.
    • Chopperoo
    • By Chopperoo 8th Jan 18, 3:40 PM
    • 6 Posts
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    Chopperoo
    • #8
    • 8th Jan 18, 3:40 PM
    • #8
    • 8th Jan 18, 3:40 PM
    Hi Doozergirl, the seller has liaised Building regs throughout. We found out about the changes to the spec (safety, insulation etc) from the seller, but he didn't mention the changes to the layout until the building regulations notice of passing of plans was sent out.
    • ProDave
    • By ProDave 8th Jan 18, 5:02 PM
    • 516 Posts
    • 581 Thanks
    ProDave
    • #9
    • 8th Jan 18, 5:02 PM
    • #9
    • 8th Jan 18, 5:02 PM
    Thanks ProDave -
    The planning permission specifies all year round occupation but not as a main residence, holiday purposes only.
    Wood construction - ground floor is approx. 61 square meters and mezzanine is about 46 square meters.
    Originally posted by Chopperoo
    The developer missed a trick

    Had they built it as a modular single storey building, no more than 100 square metres and subject to certain dimension limitiations, it could have legally qualified as a park home (it does not need to be on wheels to meet that definition) and then would have been completely exempt from building regulations and you could have whatever layout you had wanted.

    Too late now I am afraid.
    • Chopperoo
    • By Chopperoo 8th Jan 18, 6:54 PM
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    Chopperoo
    Cheers ProDave. Hindsight is a wonderful thing, however I'm not actually sure that he would have done it differently. He is passionate about building something that is in keeping with its setting and, what makes the property beautiful is its design, hence the need for building regs.

    Hey ho...
    • ProDave
    • By ProDave 8th Jan 18, 7:36 PM
    • 516 Posts
    • 581 Thanks
    ProDave
    Any scope to alter the layout back to how you want it after it is signed off?
    • Chopperoo
    • By Chopperoo 9th Jan 18, 8:43 AM
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    • 0 Thanks
    Chopperoo
    Hmmmm, interesting point ProDave. If the kitchen is fitted as per the building regs then it would be an additional expense that I could do without. However, I'm wondering whether I could fit the kitchen using fewer units get it signed off and then complete it.
    I've just spoken to my solicitor (who annoyingly didn't raise this issue when I asked him to in November) and he's going to raise the clarifications.
    • ProDave
    • By ProDave 9th Jan 18, 8:48 AM
    • 516 Posts
    • 581 Thanks
    ProDave
    Extra units may be because BR's state a minimum amount of kitchen cupboard space.
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