Demised Roof Terrace - landlord permission

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    Demised Roof Terrace - landlord permission

    We have a roof terrace, demised to us in the lease, on which I wish to place a freestanding rectangular sun awning. There is no structural problem, it is self supporting and weighted appropriately against wind and we have planning permission. The landlord says it is forbidden under a clause in the lease which which specifies "Not to make any alterations or additions to the exterior of the Premises". The "exterior" is not defined, but references to it elsewhere in the lease, like "...the decoration of the exterior of the Building ...", "... shall be put on any any window on the exterior of the Premises ...", "the exterior of the premises shall not be decorated by the Leaseholder" suggest "exterior" refers to walls rather than to the surface of a roof terrace. Any thoughts on this?

    You should consider buying the freehold and become the landlord.

    If the sun awning is portable and free standing, you are not making any alteration or addition to the building. . .


      Originally posted by pmorton View Post
      There is no structural problem, it is self supporting and weighted appropriately against wind and we have planning permission.
      Nitpicking I know, but can the terrace take the weight? If it can't then it's a structural problem.

      An awning on it's own may be pretty light, as are a patio table and chairs, as are planting boxes, and a barbeque, and .....
      Assuming that the terrace is big enough of course, say the roof of an extension.

      You see the potential issue - if/once you get all those different pieces on there, and a few friends around to enjoy a barbie/party, can the terrace still take all that weight?

      But yes, that alterations clause would not seem to apply to a free standing awning.

      The 'decorations' bits may be more tricky, they seem designed to ensure that the exterior appearance isn't changed, and an awning would certainly change it.


        I do not think there can be much doubt that a roof terrace is part of the exterior. Equally, suggesting that putting up an awning would amount to decorating the exterior has to be stretching the usual understanding of what is meant by "decorating". The only question therefore is whether the awning is an alteration or addition for the purpose of the clause.

        It has to come down to a question of degree. A roof terrace is meant to be used so, as nukecad suggests, you would expect to be able to put on it a patio table and chairs. I think you can safely add a sunshade. An awning is starting to get into a grey area. Perhaps the test should be if planning permission is needed. I would think that in most cases it is not, though some sort of permission may be needed if the property is a listed building or in a conservation area.


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