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Thomas, Lawyer
Category: UK Property Law
Satisfied Customers: 7620
Experience:  BA (Hons), PgDip, Practising Solicitor
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i have a leasehold flat. outside my kitchen there is a flat

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i have a leasehold flat. outside my kitchen there is a flat roof (above the flat below). i would like to apply for planning permission to put a railing on the flat roof. we have been using the roof space for over 5 years. question is do i need to contact the freeholder before i apply for planning permission? i am quite happy to have the flat roof un demised.

Does your lease grant you a right to use the roof (if it is not demised)?

Does your lease state that you shoudl not make alteratiosn to this area (perhaps otherwise defined)?

Customer: replied 4 years ago.

i don't think this area is part of my lease & therefore not mentioned in it


Thanks for your patience.

I think you need to check your lease in detail. It may be that the area falls within the definition of “communal areas” or the “building” as a whole. In which case you need to check what covenants you are bound by in respect of those areas.

It may be that you have covenanted not to alter those areas, or something similar, in which case though the application would not breach the covenant the actual act of putting up the hand rail would.

Practically though, there is little point in applying for planning permission without first getting the (informal, at least) consent of the freeholder/management company. Once you have applied for PP you will have to put a notice up before you do the works so it’s inevitable that they would find out.

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Kind regards,

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