Minor alterations not allowed.

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    Minor alterations not allowed.

    Hello

    Could anyone offer a little guidance on modifications and how to proceed if permission is not forthcoming?

    I have applied to our RMC via the managing agent for some minor alterations to the 70's flat I have leased, usual setup of an RMC of owner-occupiers owning the Freehold.

    1. Add 100mm steam extraction ventilation outlet to the rear of the property, will come out next to the drains in the same location as an outlet from the flats on lower floors.
    2. Add a stud wall/door to annexe an area off the dining room to form a study (door will go through the existing wall of the hall).

    i.Many other flats in the block have these improvements, most have permission but suspect some may not as works were done over the last 50 years.

    iiI I don't think adding the study should interfere with the issue of stacking, as the type/time of usage, location and noise will be the same and it can be easily returned to the original layout.

    iii.The lease states that the physical structure shouldn't be altered without written permission, indicating our lease is of the type that isn't completely restricted.


    I wrote to the RMC 6 months ago with plans and have reminded them but have received no response, my questions are.

    Is the Freeholder obliged to give permission for reasonable modifications that have been presumably granted to others?

    Are they obliged to reply at all?

    Is there an expected timeframe that a landlord is expected to grant/withhold permission or reply?

    I have read in other threads words to the effect of "reasonable permission shouldn't be refused" assuming permission has been refused I have also seen the phrase "unreasonably withheld" used to describe this scenario, what if anything can be done?

    Many thanks in advance for any thoughts.






    #2
    We need to know please what your lease says about alterations. Please quote the relevant clause(s) in full.

    Comment


      #3
      This is the exert.

      From Lease

      i. The Lessee shall not make any alteration in the Premises without the approval in writing of the Lessor to the plans and specifications thereof and shall make such alterations only in accordance with such plans and· specifications when approved.

      From Underlease

      ii. The Lessee shall not make any alterations to the Demised Property without the. approval in writing of the Lessor to the plans and specifications thereof and shall make such alterations only in accordance with such plans and specifications when approved. The Lessee shall at its own expense obtain all licences planning permissions and other things necessary for the lawful carrying out of such alterations a.nd shall comply with all bye-laws regulations and conditions applicable generally or to the specific works undertaken

      I have provided plans and a description of the proposed works.

      Comment


        #4
        The lease does NOT contain a direct statement such as............"landlord not to withhold consent unreasonably"

        The lease was written prior to 1988, does this mean the 1988 Landlord and tenant act would only apply to a lease dated on or after the act as the act seems to offer the benefit of the above whether it's in the lease or not.

        I believe the lease is "fully qualified"




        Comment


          #5
          Whoops I mean the lease is partially qualified.

          Comment


            #6
            Originally posted by Silverdale View Post
            The lease does NOT contain a direct statement such as............"landlord not to withhold consent unreasonably"
            The words are implied by statute, not one passed in 1988, but in 1927.

            Both clauses quoted prohibit any sort of alteration without consent.

            The landlord is not obliged to reply, but a failure to reply within a reasonable time amounts to unreasonably withholding consent.

            Comment


              #7
              Originally posted by Lawcruncher View Post
              ...but a failure to reply within a reasonable time amounts to unreasonably withholding consent.
              Are there really any consequences from "unreasonably withholding consent" though, or does this just mean that the leaseholder might be more likely to win, or avoid paying costs, if they later go to court?

              Comment


                #8
                The problem of making alterations without consent will arise when you come to sell the flat ; those alterations have to be declared.

                Comment


                  #9
                  Very interesting, thanks Lawcruncer.

                  Originally posted by Gordon999 View Post
                  The problem of making alterations without consent will arise when you come to sell the flat; those alterations have to be declared.
                  Slight sidestep, but let's face it most leasehold properties have undeclared alterations, chances are that the landlords and current leaseholders don't even know about most of them. When you say "have to be declared" you mean should be declared. You can understand that a leaseholder wouldn't declare an alteration on sale as chances are they would get away with it.

                  For the record, I'm not doing this nor condoning the action, just stating that the problem transferring with the lease means keeping stum a preferable option. for many.


                  Comment

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