How JustAnswer Works:
  • Ask an Expert
    Experts are full of valuable knowledge and are ready to help with any question. Credentials confirmed by a Fortune 500 verification firm.
  • Get a Professional Answer
    Via email, text message, or notification as you wait on our site.
    Ask follow up questions if you need to.
  • 100% Satisfaction Guarantee
    Rate the answer you receive.
Ask Thomas Your Own Question
Thomas
Thomas, Lawyer
Category: UK Property Law
Satisfied Customers: 7503
Experience:  BA (Hons), PgDip, Practising Solicitor
28732269
Type Your UK Property Law Question Here...
Thomas is online now
A new question is answered every 9 seconds

We are currently involved in a parking dispute with neighbours.

This answer was rated:

We are currently involved in a parking dispute with neighbours. After many years of parking on the privately owned shared driveway and public road, by us and other neighbours, one neighbour has now decided that they don't like anyone parking in either place. They have involved the police, threatening tickets for cars parked on the public road, and have also threatened to enforce the covenant we all signed stating that nobody can park on the private, shared driveways. This doesn't leave any space for visitors or our spare car.

My key question is simply, what can be done to enforce a covenant? The key wording is, "Not to park any vehicle on the Estate Roads or driveways used in common by the Transferee with the owners for the time being of any of the other plots on the estate." How can this be enforced (affecting both us and other neighbours who have parked on the shared land for over 10 years)? Related, who can enforce the covenant? Current residents, or is it only the original land owner who put the covenants in place?
Hi,

Was the covenant imposed by the original developers and, if so, does it state that it is for the benefit of their "sucessors in title"?

Tom
Customer: replied 4 years ago.
Yes, successors in title is mentioned, and the transferor was the original developer, initially to the first purchaser of the house who we subsequently bought from.
Hi

Thanks for your patience.

I’m afraid that on the information here he will be able to enforce the covenant against you/others.

Given that the covenant mentions “sucessors in title” (which would include you, he and others since by purchasing the properties you are in effect successor in title as well) and that the covenant appears to have been drafted for the benefit of each owner as against each other) then I can’t really see how you could attempt to construe the covenant as simply being for the benefit of the original developer.

However, it’s always worth having a look at the specific documentation and I would suggest that you arrange a consultation with a local property solicitor to confirm after specifically analysing the Transfer(s) and registered titles) to confrim absolutely. I would mentally prepare yourself on the basis that he would be able to enforce.

Unfortunately, the ten years period falls short of the 20 years required to claim a right to under prescription so this is not an option either.

Sorry, it could not be better news.

Please remember to RATE my answer OK SERVICE, GOOD SERVICE OR EXCELLENT SERVICE or above if you are satisfied that you have received the correct legal advice (even if it is not the answer you wanted to hear), otherwise I do not receive any credit for answering your question.

If you are not willing to rate my answer as OK SERVICE, GOOD SERVICE OR EXCELLENT SERVICE then allow me to assist further by replying asking what clarification you require rather than rating my answer at levels below.

If you wish for me to provide you with further guidance on any question you may have in the future then please submit a further question to the board requesting me either by my profile or by marking your question. “FAO Tom”.

Kind regards,


Tom
Customer: replied 4 years ago.

But what can be done to enforce the covenant? Is a fine imposed? would it be imposed each time parking occurred?


 


My understanding is that covenants are there to increase or maintain the value of the land. Telling future purchasers that they can't park directly alongside their house, on land they technically own and that doesn't block other residents would surely devalue the property. Would this be taken into consideration at some point?

Hi

There would be a Court order which stated that such parking should not occur. Therefore any such parking would be contempt of court, which is an offence, so you/others could be arrested if parked.

The valuation of the properties is taken in to account if you were to apply to the Lands Tribunal to attempt to have the covenant removed/modfied and I agree that there does seem to be a valuation argument in your favour but the cost and time to make such an application is pretty prohibitive (thousands of pounds, great deal of time) and is usually recourse sought by developers or those with considerable means.

That is not to say that you might not get anything by threatening an action and doing sabre rattling in the form of a solicitors letter, possibly co-signed by all other resident on your side.

Please remember to rate my answer.

Tom
Customer: replied 4 years ago.

Ok, thanks. Final mini-question before I rate. Would that court order apply to everyone, even the neighbour who started the action (who in the past has parked on the shared land themselves)?

Hi,

It would apply to the person that the guy named as the respondent in the Court papers, though he coudl name as many as he liked.

Please rate my answer.

Tom
Thomas and other UK Property Law Specialists are ready to help you