Attention: Please take a moment to consider our terms and conditions before posting.

Garden Access Advice

Looking for some advice if anyone can help or point in the right direction. 

Back in 2016 the Wife and I purchased our first property a end of terrace house and something which being naive first time buyers we did not pick up on was access to the garden. As a end of terrace there is a small alley running along our house with a gate that was padlocked that runs into our neighbours garden. When we moved in the neighbours a old couple introduced themselves and said that if we needed access to let them know and they would be happy for us to lift a fence panel up and use access which we have taken them up on for install of a shed and laying of a new patio. 

Since then you can see that at some point maybe they have maybe taken the alley as an extra to there garden and installed the gate and fence and blocking what would be our access. As they was an old couple and quite unwell we never pushed it with them or quired it. They have now both unfortunately passed away and the house is up for sale by the children. 

I was just wondering where do we stand. Can we now look and dispute the access and look to get joint access? There used to be a path half way up our garden from where the alley would be almost like there was once joint access through the alley. 

Although we have done the major works in the garden and access may not be needed you never know and also would like to know with regards to how it may impact selling the property? 

any lifers helps or thoughts would be much appreciated. 

Comments

  • We have the same thing at the bottom of the garden. I would put in a request to land registry, find out who it belongs to.
  • PopIcon said:
    We have the same thing at the bottom of the garden. I would put in a request to land registry, find out who it belongs to.
    thanks. I think that is what my wife is doing today. 
  • I am sure you will receive some good advice on here R&C however whatever is said seek the advice of a solicitor. I purchased a house a couple of years ago and there was an issue with a farmer owning certain access rights to the private road where I live.

    I was tempted to leave it and assume the old guy would never dabble with his rights and all would be well however the first thing the solicitor said was he will eventually die and pass those rights on.

    My problem was all sorted within the fee for purchasing the property so I am guessing you will need to get a couple of quotes for the advice.

    Good luck


  • My house is in a similar position,check the deeds of the house[whoever has them],it maybe that your old neighbours blocked the access without permission.
  • Sounds like the gate has been put in the wrong place, as you say the path used to run direct to your entrance. Think i'd get the gate removed now and see if anyone tells me i can't do that at a later date, then deal with it via solicitors only if necessary.

  • Looking for some advice if anyone can help or point in the right direction. 

    Back in 2016 the Wife and I purchased our first property a end of terrace house and something which being naive first time buyers we did not pick up on was access to the garden. As a end of terrace there is a small alley running along our house with a gate that was padlocked that runs into our neighbours garden. When we moved in the neighbours a old couple introduced themselves and said that if we needed access to let them know and they would be happy for us to lift a fence panel up and use access which we have taken them up on for install of a shed and laying of a new patio. 

    Since then you can see that at some point maybe they have maybe taken the alley as an extra to there garden and installed the gate and fence and blocking what would be our access. As they was an old couple and quite unwell we never pushed it with them or quired it. They have now both unfortunately passed away and the house is up for sale by the children. 

    I was just wondering where do we stand. Can we now look and dispute the access and look to get joint access? There used to be a path half way up our garden from where the alley would be almost like there was once joint access through the alley. 

    Although we have done the major works in the garden and access may not be needed you never know and also would like to know with regards to how it may impact selling the property? 

    any lifers helps or thoughts would be much appreciated. 

    Sort it out now rose , even if your not particularly bothered.
    Got the same with my garden the fella next door was selling his house and luckily enough I was in.
    He was going to put a fence up to the back wall and I told him there's an alleyway at the back.
    Me and the wife were not really bothered just couldn't be bothered with any hassle when it come to selling ours or the new neighbours thinking thier garden goes right to the back.
    Also not sure your probably find out later if there is any timescale on this.
    Like 10 years and you lose the right to the access
  • Hello @roseandcrown - I am not an expert, but I have two bits of advice that I hope you'll find useful.  The first one is something I would do if I were in your position; the second one is an absolute must. 

    1. Get in touch with either the sellers (if you know them) or the agent that is selling the property and tell them that you want to make a claim for access on that bit of the alley.  If you do that, you will know that, whoever buys the property is aware of there being a "dispute" and will either want to get it sorted before they buy (i.e. make the sellers sort something out) or make you an offer before they complete.  In short, you will be making it clear what you want, so that goes on the record of the sale.  

    2.  (This is the "must").  Talk to a solicitor.  It doesn't have to cost a lot of money.  (And, in fact, you might be able to get some advice free of charge).  But it could well save you lots of money and/or trouble further down the line.  I would guess that it's probably not a big deal and there could be a simple solution to be found.  

    Good luck!
  • I phoned land registry once about who was responsible for which back garden fence. They were actually brilliant and quick and confident in their reply and helpfulness.
    My first port of call would be to call them.
  • edited May 9
    I am no expert on these matters.

    However 20 plus years ago if land was adopted and unchallenged for 12 years or more then the new situation was deemed to prevail.

    Things may have changed with new legislation in the intervening period but if it's less than 12 years since you bought the place I'd say, I emphasise once more as a layman, that you have a good chance of formally confirming your right to access.

    EDIT: The one proviso I forgot to add was 'caveat emptor' buyer beware. If the situation was as it is now when you purchased then you may be deemed to have accepted it.


  • Thanks all.

    Have contacted land register and made an order for both properties and will dig the deeds out of my file sin the loft tonight. Going to call some solicitors this afternoon and try and get a appointment. 

    Part of me is tempted just to take the gate down and install joint access gates but suppose should do it all properly now. 
  • Sponsored links:


  • The "dispute" element works both ways and might affect your ability to sell your home in the future.  Often these access areas were shared and illegally "adopted" by one party, so as suggested look at your deeds and get your neighbour's from Land Registry.  Use a solicitor as a last resort, as many of them are clueless.  I used to work for a housebuilder as an accountant and would have to explain elements of deeds/leases to supposed legal experts.
  • CL is great, isn't it?  In only a couple of hours, @roseandcrown has had ten people posting on this thread.  And as many as nine of them have been helpful comments based on experience and understanding and seeking to help out a fellow lifer.  Well done to almost everyone! 
  • All access rights, wayleaves, licences and restrictions should have come up on the survey you paid for when you purchased.  Anything arising from them should have been brought to your attention by your lawyer/conveyancer at the time.  Check all the paperwork from your purchase and direct the relevant professional to attend to the matter - they've had your money already.
    It's always worth a friendly chat with the neighbour in these circumstances, emphasising that you're not taking an adversarial position.  So long as you have no expectation of a positive outcome - people usually default to hostile entrenched positions over these matters.  It's worth putting on record that you raised it civilly, seeking compromise and that your conduct hitherto was in no way a concession of the rights you legitimately have.
    Get a solicitor on the case - ideally the one you've already paid.
    For the future, it is ridiculously cheap to insure yourself against the cost of matters arising from shared access and similar.  Few years back mine was £28 one off payment for perpetual cover for all issues that may arise from sharing a passage with my neighbour (stop sniggering at the back).
     
  • And a bit of levity is what really makes CL what it is.  Almost everyone on here has a sense of humour. 
  • Riviera said:
    And a bit of levity is what really makes CL what it is.  Almost everyone on here has a sense of humour. 
    Don't be so hard on yourself. 
  • All access rights, wayleaves, licences and restrictions should have come up on the survey you paid for when you purchased.  Anything arising from them should have been brought to your attention by your lawyer/conveyancer at the time.  Check all the paperwork from your purchase and direct the relevant professional to attend to the matter - they've had your money already.
    It's always worth a friendly chat with the neighbour in these circumstances, emphasising that you're not taking an adversarial position.  So long as you have no expectation of a positive outcome - people usually default to hostile entrenched positions over these matters.  It's worth putting on record that you raised it civilly, seeking compromise and that your conduct hitherto was in no way a concession of the rights you legitimately have.
    Get a solicitor on the case - ideally the one you've already paid.
    For the future, it is ridiculously cheap to insure yourself against the cost of matters arising from shared access and similar.  Few years back mine was £28 one off payment for perpetual cover for all issues that may arise from sharing a passage with my neighbour (stop sniggering at the back).
     
    Also, when you're having your friendly chat with the neighbours, tell them you know someone called STIG THUNDERCOCK.  That'll put them in the right frame of mind to help you out. 
  • just spoken with a solicitor and sending over the land registry documents to review for me. Looking at the documents my gut feel is they own the access. 
  • just spoken with a solicitor and sending over the land registry documents to review for me. Looking at the documents my gut feel is they own the access. 
    As @StigThundercock pointed out, before being distracted by his neighbour's back passage, that's something that should have been drawn to your attention by your solicitor during the purchase. Have a word with them!
  • Rizzo said:
    just spoken with a solicitor and sending over the land registry documents to review for me. Looking at the documents my gut feel is they own the access. 
    As @StigThundercock pointed out, before being distracted by his neighbour's back passage, that's something that should have been drawn to your attention by your solicitor during the purchase. Have a word with them!
    This was your solicitor's job to research these matters at the time of purchase.
    That's what he was paid to do.

    Perhaps ask him why he failed to sort this matter at the time?
    Politely, of course.


  • just spoken with a solicitor and sending over the land registry documents to review for me. Looking at the documents my gut feel is they own the access. 
    Doesn't necessarily matter if they own it.

    The key question is whether or not there is a 'right of way' (ie access) over the land in question. If there is then, even if they do own the land, you should be entitled to exercise that right of way at reasonable times and after reasonable notice assuming a non-emergency situation.
  • Sponsored links:


  • Oggy Red said:
    Rizzo said:
    just spoken with a solicitor and sending over the land registry documents to review for me. Looking at the documents my gut feel is they own the access. 
    As @StigThundercock pointed out, before being distracted by his neighbour's back passage, that's something that should have been drawn to your attention by your solicitor during the purchase. Have a word with them!
    This was your solicitor's job to research these matters at the time of purchase.
    That's what he was paid to do.

    Perhaps ask him why he failed to sort this matter at the time?
    Politely, of course.


    Yes, I had loads of these sort of queries when selling my ma in laws place.
    They were a nonsense and the buyers' solicitor were referring to Title Deeds. which must have been @1950 and bore no relation, to how the road had looked for more than 50 years.

    They wouldn't have it, so I paid £200 for an indemnity, in order to fast track the sale.
  • Oggy Red said:
    Rizzo said:
    just spoken with a solicitor and sending over the land registry documents to review for me. Looking at the documents my gut feel is they own the access. 
    As @StigThundercock pointed out, before being distracted by his neighbour's back passage, that's something that should have been drawn to your attention by your solicitor during the purchase. Have a word with them!
    This was your solicitor's job to research these matters at the time of purchase.
    That's what he was paid to do.

    Perhaps ask him why he failed to sort this matter at the time?
    Politely, of course.


    Yes, I had loads of these sort of queries when selling my ma in laws place.
    They were a nonsense and the buyers' solicitor were referring to Title Deeds. which must have been @1950 and bore no relation, to how the road had looked for more than 50 years.

    They wouldn't have it, so I paid £200 for an indemnity, in order to fast track the sale.
    Yes indemnities seem to be a nice little earner these days.

    Obfuscate for long enough then when the buyer /seller is in a state of blind panic offer the 'for £x you can take out an indemnity just in case anything does go wrong.'

    Racket!
  • Rear garden access? @DaveMehmet is your man.
  • Any updates?

    Can get you a current Land Registry document if you require one. 
Sign In or Register to comment.

Roland Out!