Ask an UK Law Question, Get an Answer ASAP!
First, the practicalities, only the person who originally imposed the covenant and the other owners of properties in the area could apply to Court for an order that the covenant is enforced against you.
A covenant of this nature is usually imposed by developers who wish to secure the residential continuity of the development to protect the property and other from a diminution in value because of environmental factors resulting from a business trading there.
I suppose that in a (very) strict interpretation of the construction of the words the act could arguably be said to be a breach, but not on a broad interpretation and it's certainly not in the general spirit of the covenant (which a Court would be mindful of - it is intended to prevent someone opening a shop with all the noise and disturbance that follows with it. A company renting in the course of it's business to residential occupiers would not cause any greater disturbance than if your brother were occupying it as it's home. It would be a pretty unsympathetic Court to impose it in my view.
In any event your brother can a obtain restrictive covenant indemnity policy to cover the cost of any loss suffered as a result of enforcement action being taken (and for the legal costs of enforcing this). If you google this you will see plenty of insurers will to provide such a policy.
Your brother should also speak to his conveyancer to take his view on the covenant, presumably your brother told them of his plans for the property but I should be extremely surprised if his view departs very far from mine.
If this is useful please kindly click accept so that I may be rewarded for my time. It will be gratefully received and you will be free to ask follow up questions.
DISCLAIMER: Answers from Experts on JustAnswer are not substitutes for the advice of an attorney. JustAnswer is a public forum and questions and responses are not private or confidential or protected by the attorney-client privilege. The Expert above is not your attorney, and the response above is not legal advice. You should not read this response to propose specific action or address specific circumstances, but only to give you a sense of general principles of law that might affect the situation you describe. Application of these general principles to particular circumstances must be done by a lawyer who has spoken with you in confidence, learned all relevant information, and explored various options. Before acting on these general principles, you should hire a lawyer licensed to practice law in the jurisdiction to which your question pertains.
The responses above are from individual Experts, not JustAnswer. The site and services are provided “as is”. To view the verified credential of an Expert, click on the “Verified” symbol in the Expert’s profile. This site is not for emergency questions which should be directed immediately by telephone or in-person to qualified professionals. Please carefully read the Terms of Service (last updated February 8, 2012).