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    • EliHug
    • By EliHug 10th Aug 18, 10:14 PM
    • 2Posts
    • 0Thanks
    Boundary issue
    • #1
    • 10th Aug 18, 10:14 PM
    Boundary issue 10th Aug 18 at 10:14 PM
    Hiya, I am new to the forum and hoping for some advice.
    My husband and I as first time buyers moved into our first home, an end of terrace house 3 years ago. We have just been contacted by the council to advise that our front garden has encroached the boundary of the property (the open side) significantly (2-3m) and they need it returned to council requirements.
    Having checked the deeds we donít dispute this, it seems that the previous owner had the front garden paved, including this section of land.

    I have contacted our Conveyancing company for help with this. After advising me to ask the council if we could buy the land off them (this isnít an option as we have an electric box next to the property which requires access) they have now stopped answering my emails.

    Am I wrong in thinking someone should have picked up on this during the buying process? I admit we were very naive in the process but Iím certain that if I had been advised by anyone to check the boundary lines I would have done it.

    Can anyone advise on if and how I can persue this? Although we canít dispute that the land isnít ours, we werenít responsible for the encroachment and I donít feel we should be responsible for the cost of returning it to council requirements.

    Thanks for your help
Page 1
    • Doozergirl
    • By Doozergirl 10th Aug 18, 10:18 PM
    • 26,343 Posts
    • 70,957 Thanks
    • #2
    • 10th Aug 18, 10:18 PM
    • #2
    • 10th Aug 18, 10:18 PM
    The solicitor doesn't visit the property.

    They provide you with the land registry documents with the boundaries marked and it's your job to check that they are correct.
    Everything that is supposed to be in heaven is already here on earth.
    • G_M
    • By G_M 10th Aug 18, 10:31 PM
    • 47,011 Posts
    • 57,166 Thanks
    • #3
    • 10th Aug 18, 10:31 PM
    • #3
    • 10th Aug 18, 10:31 PM
    So you looked at the property before you bought it, and saw where the boundary appeared to be.

    You were also sent copies of the Title Plan by your coneyancer, and asked to check them.

    You either

    * did not spot the difference between the Plan and what you saw, or
    * you spotted it but decided to say nothing, or
    * you spotted it and brought it to the attention of your conveyancer and asked for advice - in which case, what did your conveyancer advise at the time?

    Your conveyancer on the other hand, saw the Title Plan but never visited the property, so had no way to know that the sellers had extended their front garden (unless you told them).
    • Cakeguts
    • By Cakeguts 11th Aug 18, 12:22 AM
    • 5,536 Posts
    • 8,500 Thanks
    • #4
    • 11th Aug 18, 12:22 AM
    • #4
    • 11th Aug 18, 12:22 AM
    You have to return it to the council requirements because although you didn't cause the problem you haven't done anything about it.

    The time to get your sellers to do something about it was before you bought the property when you realised that the plan you got from your solicitors didn't match what you could see at the property.

    This means that the responsibility for returning this land to how the council want it to be is now your responsibility.
    • stator
    • By stator 11th Aug 18, 12:49 AM
    • 6,971 Posts
    • 4,728 Thanks
    • #5
    • 11th Aug 18, 12:49 AM
    • #5
    • 11th Aug 18, 12:49 AM
    Yes, unfortunately that person is you.
    It's up to the buyer to check if the boundaries on the map match what is on the ground.

    You'll have to return the land to the council.
    If you make a start on it, they probably won't care if it takes a while.
    Can you do it yourself?
    Changing the world, one sarcastic comment at a time.
    • loveka
    • By loveka 11th Aug 18, 9:24 AM
    • 440 Posts
    • 384 Thanks
    • #6
    • 11th Aug 18, 9:24 AM
    • #6
    • 11th Aug 18, 9:24 AM
    I would ask this question on the Garden Law website. There are very knowledgeable people there.

    It would (I think) very much depend on how long ago this encroachment happened, and whether the land has been fenced off from the road. If it has been there for many years it is possible you could claim adverse possession on the land.

    A RICS surveyor will give you half an hour free boundary advice- look on their website for the number, they will give you a list of surveyors in your area who offer this service.
    • Davesnave
    • By Davesnave 11th Aug 18, 10:44 AM
    • 27,326 Posts
    • 97,695 Thanks
    • #7
    • 11th Aug 18, 10:44 AM
    • #7
    • 11th Aug 18, 10:44 AM
    I would ask this question on the Garden Law website. There are very knowledgeable people there.
    Originally posted by loveka
    If 4 pretty knowledgeable people here think the same thing with no one dissenting, it seems highly likely responses elsewhere will be similar.

    If the OP is upset at the thought of removing some slabs and reinstating the land as it was, I'm not sure they'd want the monetary risk involved in an adverse possesion case, especially if the council is involved.
    'There are places to go beyond belief'

    Neil Armstrong, apparently referring to worlds beyond the solar system.
    • EliHug
    • By EliHug 12th Aug 18, 8:49 AM
    • 2 Posts
    • 0 Thanks
    • #8
    • 12th Aug 18, 8:49 AM
    • #8
    • 12th Aug 18, 8:49 AM
    Thanks for the responses.

    As I mentioned in my post, we didnít check the boundary lines and were never advised to check them at any stage. As first time buyers I did research on things to check when buying a house but this didnít come up.
    I did expect it would fall to us to put this right as we are the owners of the property and didnít think to check this - to be honest it didnít even cross my mind that this could even happen - naive of me I know! Just one of those things I will chalk down to experience.
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