Neighbour stopped our water supply- easements/rights?

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    Neighbour stopped our water supply- easements/rights?

    My tenant rang me today and said his water had been cut off while he was having a shower. Apparently the neighbours, having left the house derelict for fifteen years, are renovating their property and are doing work on the water supply. One neighbour is "upstream" but the rest of the half-dozen houses in the terrace are "downstream" and at least one other has had his water supply interrupted.

    The water company told me curtly that they would have no knowledge of this because "one of the houses has a meter, so the supply is shared". I don't fully understand the statement but it is pretty clear they won't help.

    I then visited the workmen and had a friendly conversation with their spokesman who said he was the brother of the owner. His English was limited but he did say he had contacted the water company but could not wait for them so had gone ahead and "done it myself". I am not sure exactly what he means.

    I am embarrassed about the severe inconvenience to my tenant and determined to help. Can anyone offer any suggestions or similar experiences please?

    #2
    Are these properties:
    a. houses (freehold?); or
    b. flats (so same freehold reversioner- is that you?)
    JEFFREY SHAW, solicitor [and Topic Expert], Nether Edge Law*
    1. Public advice is believed accurate, but I accept no legal responsibility except to direct-paying private clients.
    2. Telephone advice: see http://www.landlordzone.co.uk/forums/showthread.php?t=34638.
    3. For paid advice about conveyancing/leaseholds/L&T, contact me* and become a private client.
    4. *- Contact info: click on my name (blue-highlight link).

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      #3
      These are about half a dozen freehold houses in a terraced row. (The road is only about 50 yards long, situated in the centre of town and, I believe, not adopted by the council.)

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        #4
        Originally posted by Direct View Post
        These are about half a dozen freehold houses in a terraced row. (The road is only about 50 yards long, situated in the centre of town and, I believe, not adopted by the council.)
        See pre-registration title deeds and documents. At some earlier time, all the houses wil have been in common ownership. As each was sold-off, easements (usually shown by blue lines on Deed plans) will have been created. If water mains are unadopted (by Water Co. [W], not Council), there's no point asking W for details of pipes' routeing which it would otherwise be able to supply in answer to a search form CON29DW.
        JEFFREY SHAW, solicitor [and Topic Expert], Nether Edge Law*
        1. Public advice is believed accurate, but I accept no legal responsibility except to direct-paying private clients.
        2. Telephone advice: see http://www.landlordzone.co.uk/forums/showthread.php?t=34638.
        3. For paid advice about conveyancing/leaseholds/L&T, contact me* and become a private client.
        4. *- Contact info: click on my name (blue-highlight link).

        Comment


          #5
          Thanks Jeffrey. If the water company is not going to be involved, what can I do, do you think?

          Comment


            #6
            Originally posted by Direct View Post
            Thanks Jeffrey. If the water company is not going to be involved, what can I do, do you think?
            (Sigh) Easy: here's the answer again. See pre-registration title deeds and documents. At some earlier time, all the houses wil have been in common ownership. As each was sold-off, easements (usually shown by blue lines on Deed plans) will have been created.
            JEFFREY SHAW, solicitor [and Topic Expert], Nether Edge Law*
            1. Public advice is believed accurate, but I accept no legal responsibility except to direct-paying private clients.
            2. Telephone advice: see http://www.landlordzone.co.uk/forums/showthread.php?t=34638.
            3. For paid advice about conveyancing/leaseholds/L&T, contact me* and become a private client.
            4. *- Contact info: click on my name (blue-highlight link).

            Comment


              #7
              Would the existence of such an easement allow me to use due process to help my tenant get his water supply back?

              Comment


                #8
                Originally posted by Direct View Post
                Would the existence of such an easement allow me to use due process to help my tenant get his water supply back?
                Yes. An easement is a [usually] legal right:
                a. in favour of property A (benefit); and
                b. against property B (burden),
                so it's enforceable by owner of A against owner of B.

                The fact that your property A is sublet makes no difference: you as owner can enforce. You need to do so pdq.
                JEFFREY SHAW, solicitor [and Topic Expert], Nether Edge Law*
                1. Public advice is believed accurate, but I accept no legal responsibility except to direct-paying private clients.
                2. Telephone advice: see http://www.landlordzone.co.uk/forums/showthread.php?t=34638.
                3. For paid advice about conveyancing/leaseholds/L&T, contact me* and become a private client.
                4. *- Contact info: click on my name (blue-highlight link).

                Comment


                  #9
                  Thank you Jeffrey for your succint response. I will need to act, as you say, pdq, presumably not just for the sake of my tenant but also for legal reasons?

                  Comment

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