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18 Sep 2018

Restrictive covenants versus housing shortage

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The Department of Housing, Communities and Local Government was busy over the summer. It issued a number of statements about housing policy including the Rough Sleeping Strategy, a New Deal for Social Housing, and the New Garden Communities Programme, among others. 
  
The proposal for new garden towns is building on the success of older garden cities, such as Milton Keynes, and has the potential to deliver many thousands of badly needed homes.  

However, people need to live near their place of work. Will new garden cities provide that or will they be situated where occupiers have to commute ever longer distances? We will have to wait and see.   

In the meantime, smaller developments (and developers) can play their part.  

Where there are large plots of land containing only one home, land can, in appropriate cases, be sold to create new homes. However, it is not uncommon for plots of land to be affected by restrictive covenants that restrict use to one home or restrict building without consent.

All may not be lost even if such covenants exist. The Upper Tribunal (Lands Chamber) (the UT) has jurisdiction under section 84(1) of the Law of Property Act 1925 to modify or discharge restrictive covenants. A review of decisions this year shows some development-friendly decisions.

Click here to read more.

This article was first published in the EG on 18 September 2018.

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Natalie Johnston

Natalie Johnston
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