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Landlord Planning To Extend House - We Weren't Told!


JimDiGritz
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We have literally just moved into (today) our latest rental property and whilst moving boxes around I spotted a chap in the front garden with a large piece of paper.

I approached him and asked if I could help, and he said he was from the council and was doing the final assessment for the planning permission for the two storey extension. :blink:

I asked him at what stage the PP was at and he casually answered that the decision will be made in the next 48 hours and work could start as soon as the 17th July (2 weeks)

He showed me the detailed plans and they are for a substantial two storey extension on the side of the house, replacing an old existing flat roofed single storey extension.

Now, we are renting through a LA, who have never mentioned that the LL was even contemplating having any work done.

I contacted the LA and asked what was going on, and they were surprised and said that the LL had never mentioned any PP or extension work was being considered, let alone going through to final planning stages.

What are our rights here?

Firstly if the LL does go ahead with major structural work, it will deprive us of 3 rooms (the downstairs loo, and 2 small utility/storage rooms).

Secondly there will be significant disruption. I have never lived in a house which has had a two storey extension constructed but I can't believe it is trivial, I'm guessing that they will have heavy equipment and workmen for many weeks, plus they will probably have to have constant access and will need to create access to the rooms adjoining the extension.

Thirdly, this is a worrying start to a tenancy, since clearly by adding 2 or more bedrooms the LL will want to either sell or let for a lot more than we are paying for a 3 bed house...

Any advice?

:unsure:

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You have the right to quiet enjoyment of the property for the term of your lease. I'm pretty sure building an extension to the house with you in it would breach that right. Planning permission usually last 3 years so just the fact of having it doesn't mean your LL is about to start building. Worst case is that the LL is a crook or a jerk and tries to start work immediately with you in the house, in which case you'll need to get yourself a lawyer. Most likely though is that the LL plans to either sell the place on with PP or build himself once your lease expires and you move out. How long is your lease for?

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Firstly he cant build it while you are there full stop.

Its probably likely that he didnt think it would be so quick and was planning on renting the property out for the period of getting planning, looking for quotes, deciding who to go with, waiting for a slot for the builders, all of which could have taken a year etc. I have seen this a few times around here, basically people buy a house but know it will take a while to get planning etc and dont want to lose money paying the mortgage on it, so just rent it out. The downside to this is that it probably means he will be kicking you out sometime, and isnt commited to being a long term landlord.

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I was sure planning lasted 5 years for the work to commence. I'd be ready to leave at the end of the tenancy if I were you. At a guess I'd say the LL is getting planning with the intent to sell and can up the asking with planning in place.

Either way the work cannot commence with you as a tenant.

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I was sure planning lasted 5 years for the work to commence. I'd be ready to leave at the end of the tenancy if I were you. At a guess I'd say the LL is getting planning with the intent to sell and can up the asking with planning in place.

Either way the work cannot commence with you as a tenant.

PP used to last for 5 years but the period was reduced to 3 several years ago

tim

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