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Residential Property Updates

Council Slated for Indecisive Handling of Right of Way Dispute

Published on: 30 June 2013 | in categories: Legal Updates | Residential Property Updates | News and Updates

Council Slated for Indecisive Handling of Right of Way Dispute

In a public indictment of a local authority's dithering, the High Court has slated Derbyshire County Council’s handling of a minor right of way dispute that escalated into an ‘extraordinary saga’ at substantial cost to the public purse.

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One or More Supplies for VAT Purposes? Tribunal Gives Guidance

Published on: 27 June 2013 | in categories: Legal Updates | Residential Property Updates | News and Updates

One or More Supplies for VAT Purposes? Tribunal Gives Guidance

In a guideline ruling which helps to identify the somewhat wavy line between single and multiple supplies of goods for VAT purposes, the First-Tier Tribunal (FTT) has ruled that verandahs attached to zero-rated static caravans should not themselves be exempted from VAT.

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Planning Inspector Denied Developer ‘Fair Crack of the Whip’

Published on: 27 June 2013 | in categories: Legal Updates | Residential Property Updates | News and Updates

Planning Inspector Denied Developer ‘Fair Crack of the Whip’

Controversial plans to construct almost 60 new homes on the edge of a village, next door to the local cottage hospital, have been put back on track after the High Court ruled that a government planning inspector who refused permission for the project had denied the would-be developer a ‘fair crack of the whip’.

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Residents of ‘Defective’ Flats Win Over £800,000

Published on: 07 May 2013 | in categories: Legal Updates | Residential Property Updates | News and Updates

Residents of ‘Defective’ Flats Win Over £800,000

Apartment owners who complained of ‘excessively bouncy’ floors, smelly drains and sound insulation so poor that they can hear their neighbours' footsteps have won more than £800,000 compensation from the developers of the residential block and the property agents who supervised its construction.

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Local Authority ‘Privatisation’ Plans Receive Judicial Blessing

Published on: 28 April 2013 | in categories: Legal Updates | Residential Property Updates | News and Updates

A local authority’s controversial proposals to outsource swathes of its public duties to the private sector have been given the green light by the High Court. Ruling that, save in one respect, a local resident’s challenge to the plans had been brought too late, the court noted that it was not its role to rule on the merits of privatisation.

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Property Investor Deceit Victim Awarded £1.4 Million

Published on: 24 April 2013 | in categories: Legal Updates | Residential Property Updates | News and Updates

Property Investor Deceit Victim Awarded £1.4 Million

A property investor has won £1.4 million damages after he was inveigled by dishonest means into participation in a land deal which went bad. Two companies and three of their directors were found to have committed the tort of deceit in deliberately failing to inform the investor of the transaction’s true structure.

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High Court Moves to Protect Off-Street Parking

Published on: 05 April 2013 | in categories: Legal Updates | Residential Property Updates | News and Updates

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Neighbourhood Forum Boundary Challenge Fails

Published on: 12 March 2013 | in categories: Legal Updates | Residential Property Updates | News and Updates

The High Court has rejected claims by a neighbourhood forum established under the Localism Act 2011Localism Act 2011 that a local authority rode roughshod over Parliament’s intention that local communities should be encouraged to engage fully in planning decisions that affect them.

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Do-it-Yourself Builder Triumphs in VAT Rebate Claim

Published on: 10 March 2013 | in categories: Legal Updates | Residential Property Updates | News and Updates

Do-it-Yourself Builder Triumphs in VAT Rebate Claim

A do-it-yourself (DIY) builder has triumphed in his fight for a substantial VAT rebate on materials he employed in the construction of his new home. The first-tier tribunal accepted the taxpayer’s argument that payment of the tax refund was not precluded by a planning condition restricting occupation of the property to persons employed in the operation of an adjoining equestrian centre.

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Defrauded Mortgage Lender Takes Debt Priority

Published on: 03 March 2013 | in categories: Legal Updates | Residential Property Updates | News and Updates

A bank that erroneously discharged its mortgage security over a residential property owned by a fraudster has had its mistake put right by a judge. The High Court’s decision means that the bank will take top priority in a list of the fraudster’s creditors who are together owed at least £1.94 million.

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Foreign Home Buyers Beware

Published on: 03 March 2013 | in categories: Legal Updates | Residential Property Updates | News and Updates

Foreign Home Buyers Beware

A man who lost his savings in an ill-fated attempt to buy a holiday home in Cyprus which never progressed beyond a shell must now also pay tax on interest earned on the contents of a foreign bank account of which he never received a penny.

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High Court Approves 1,000 New Homes in Village

Published on: 21 February 2013 | in categories: Legal Updates | Residential Property Updates | News and Updates

High Court Approves 1,000 New Homes in Village

Tewkesbury Borough Council has failed in a High Court challenge to plans that will see 1,000 new homes added to a Gloucestershire village. The court ruled that there was nothing wrong with the government’s decision to grant planning permission to two developers for a project that will drastically increase the size of Bishop’s Cleeve, which has a current population of 10,700.

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Resounding Deposits Protection Warning to Residential Landlords

Published on: 30 June 2013 | in categories: Legal Updates | Residential Property Updates | News and Updates

Resounding Deposits Protection Warning to Residential Landlords

In a resounding warning to owners of rental properties, the Court of Appeal (the Court) has ruled that a landlord who unwittingly failed to comply with deposit protection rules was not entitled to take possession action against a tenant.

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Court Uncovers Truth of Developer's Misappropriations

Published on: 27 June 2013 | in categories: Legal Updates | Residential Property Updates | News and Updates

Court Uncovers Truth of Developer's Misappropriations

In a ruling which vividly illustrates the power of cross-examination to uncover the truth, the High Court has found that a property developer misappropriated large sums in the course of a luxury flats project and has ordered him to pay hundreds of thousands of pounds in compensation to his former business partners.

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Concept of ‘Residential Conversion’ Defined for VAT Purposes

Published on: 23 June 2013 | in categories: Legal Updates | Residential Property Updates | News and Updates

Concept of ‘Residential Conversion’ Defined for VAT Purposes

In a ruling which helps to define the concept of ‘residential conversion’ of property, the First-Tier Tribunal has rejected a couple’s plea for a VAT rebate in respect of building materials and services employed in their DIY transformation of a derelict former care home into a single private residence.

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Property Investor Wins £100,000 for Compulsorily Acquired House

Published on: 29 April 2013 | in categories: Legal Updates | Residential Property Updates | News and Updates

Property Investor Wins £100,000 for Compulsorily Acquired House

A property investor has been awarded almost £100,000 compensation after an end-of-terrace house on one of Britain’s most deprived housing estates was compulsorily acquired by a local authority as part of a regeneration scheme.

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Shared Ownership Tenants Win Commonhold Rights

Published on: 28 April 2013 | in categories: Legal Updates | Residential Property Updates | News and Updates

Shared Ownership Tenants Win Commonhold Rights

Shared ownership tenants who do not own 100% of their homes can nevertheless fully participate in the acquisition of rights of management under the Commonhold and Leasehold Reform Act 2002Commonhold and Leasehold Reform Act 2002. The Upper Tribunal (UT) ruled that, on a correct interpretation of the act, shared ownership interests should be viewed as long leases if granted for terms in excess of 21 years.

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Granny Annexe Planning Permission Refused

Published on: 17 April 2013 | in categories: Legal Updates | Residential Property Updates | News and Updates

A man who turned a dilapidated dairy building into a self-contained ‘granny annexe’ has failed in a challenge to a refusal of retrospective planning permission for the development. The High Court ruled that a government planning inspector had been entitled to refuse consent on policy grounds and had given adequate and intelligible reasons for her decision.

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Ex-Pig Farmer Refused Residential Planning Consent

Published on: 18 March 2013 | in categories: Legal Updates | Residential Property Updates | News and Updates

Ex-Pig Farmer Refused Residential Planning Consent

A former pig farmer who claimed that he gave up his agricultural business in reliance on an assurance by a local planning authority that it would consent to an alternative use of his land has had his hopes of developing it for residential purposes dashed.

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Council's Right to Sell Allotments Confirmed

Published on: 11 March 2013 | in categories: Legal Updates | Residential Property Updates | News and Updates

An attempt to limit the right of a council to sell allotments and move the allotment holders to new allotments some distance away failed in the court recently.

The council concerned wished to sell the land for housing and to move allotment holders to other adjacent plots or to other land more than 1 kilometre away.

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Farmer Cannot Live in Barn to Tend his Livestock

Published on: 05 March 2013 | in categories: Legal Updates | Residential Property Updates | News and Updates

Farmer Cannot Live in Barn to Tend his Livestock

A farmer has failed to convince the High Court that that he should be allowed to live in a barn on his land for the purpose of tending his livestock. Despite the man’s plea that an adverse decision would result in homelessness for himself and his two young children, the court rejected as unarguable submissions that there had been a risk of ‘unconscious bias’ on the part of a planning inspector who ruled against him.

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Tenants Can Veto Building on Neighbouring Plot

Published on: 03 March 2013 | in categories: Legal Updates | Residential Property Updates | News and Updates

Tenants Can Veto Building on Neighbouring Plot

A restrictive covenant entitling long leaseholders of a block of flats to veto building work on an adjoining plot of land has been ruled enforceable. However, the High Court has implied a term into the covenant that tenants’ consent to the construction of a new house cannot unreasonably be withheld.

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Housing Development’s Intrusion on Gainsborough Landscape

Published on: 25 February 2013 | in categories: Legal Updates | Residential Property Updates | News and Updates

Housing Development’s Intrusion on Gainsborough Landscape

The Court of Appeal has rejected arguments that a full environmental impact assessment (EIA) was required prior to consideration of whether planning permission should be granted for a housing development that objectors say will intrude into a historic landscape beloved of 18th Century painter, Sir Thomas Gainsborough.

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