Illegal House.

Old Apr 17th 2008, 11:55 am
  #16  
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Default Re: Illegal House.

Originally Posted by scampicat
Also I will say, there are other dwellings within the Parque natural - some were given permission to build, others have been legalised later.

Would our friends have any comeback if they were treated differently to other people?
There was a time when all homes were built that way... but that was on the basis that your cousin or son or brother used family land on which to build, and the whole project cost no more than the raw materials. Clearly, this approach to construction doesn't translate well to modern day society, so is largely frowned upon more and more by the authorities.

Somewhere between these two extremes, dwellings will have been constructed in that area, possibly over decades. Different circumstances, different mayors, different political parties, different people, different moods etc, etc.

I guess what I'm saying is that every property will be very individual as a result, and it could be difficult to make comparisons.

When was the nave first constructed and when did it turn into a house? How much land does it have? How does this history compare with (legal?) neighbours?
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Old Apr 17th 2008, 2:13 pm
  #17  
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Default Re: Illegal House.

The Nave is quite new (six years) but I know of legal proerties that have been built at much the same time or later.

It has been a house for at least five of those years.

I couldn't tell you how much land it has, I am no good at land measurements, but all I can say is, several terraces - more than some other places and less than others. And they keep it beautiful.

I know of other people who have been given permission recently. As recently as a few months ago.

Our friends have been told that there are others in the same position as them and that they are being used 'as an example'.

Think it stinks personally.

Don't get me wrong, I don't think Building Permissins should be given out willy-nilly in the Natural Park. But the same rules should apply to everybody.

Last edited by scampicat; Apr 17th 2008 at 2:21 pm.
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Old Apr 17th 2008, 6:45 pm
  #18  
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Default Re: Illegal House.

Originally Posted by scampicat
Our friends have been told that there are others in the same position as them and that they are being used 'as an example'.
An example of what?????

In some small way I could "almost" understand the logic of buyers being held accountable when they move in without habitability certificate on builder's water and leccy... although plenty do, it does infer that they've somehow accepted the property in that state. And buying from a builder, it's also inferred that the builder only built because of the buyer.

In this case - it was already there. Done and dusted - law broken - years before your friends came on the scene.

Doesn't make sense, does it?
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Old Apr 17th 2008, 6:56 pm
  #19  
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Default Re: Illegal House.

I have read this thread and am thoroughly disgusted by the way these people are being treated by the Spanish Government! Just one (of many) reasons why we are returning to the UK. I no longer wish to invest money in Spain.
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Old Apr 17th 2008, 7:33 pm
  #20  
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Default Re: Illegal House.

Thanks everyone for your help, we are seeing our friends today and will give them all your advice.

Twyntub, when our friends moved in the house even had mains water and solar panels for the electricity. They had no reason to think it was not all above board.

Lionda, we too have been thinking of returning to the UK for similar reasons to yourself.

I know all government in all countries have coruption in their midst, but here in Spain it is just blatant bullying.

Oh....and I don't know of any Spaniards who have been told they have illegal houses.
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Old Apr 17th 2008, 7:47 pm
  #21  
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Default Re: Illegal House.

Originally Posted by Lionda
I have read this thread and am thoroughly disgusted by the way these people are being treated by the Spanish Government! Just one (of many) reasons why we are returning to the UK. I no longer wish to invest money in Spain.
But this example could, has & will happen in any country, including the UK.

I feel extremely sorry for the people involved as it is their home after all, but in the end of the day if a property doesn't have the right permissions then it (or the area effected) will be pulled down or you will have to goto court to prove otherwise.

It's very easy to put the Spanish government down for something like this but it's also important to look at it with a rational eye in my opinion and seek getting any lost funds back by taking the interpreter and/or the estate agent to court.

Last edited by zel; Apr 17th 2008 at 7:58 pm.
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Old Apr 17th 2008, 7:57 pm
  #22  
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Default Re: Illegal House.

Originally Posted by zel
But this example could, has & will happen in any country, including the UK.

I feel extremely sorry for the people involved as it is their home after all, but in the end of the day if a property doesn't have the right permissions then it (or the area effected) will be pulled down or you will have to goto court to prove otherwise.
No it wouldn't!

In the UK, key officials involved in town planning CANNOT live in the area in which they are planning. Our neighbour used to be one, and travelled over 600km each week to preside over planning meetings at the other end of the country. So none of this "doing your brother in law a favour" or "making sure your own house gets better treatment". Fair and objective decisions.

Secondly, in the UK there wouldn't be a SIX YEAR DELAY between the house being completed and the town hall knocking on the door to say "oops, sorry, we didn't notice that you'd done this".

It seems to me the crux of this matter isn't that these people are being made an example of. It's that lots of OTHER people in the area have had a blind eye turned i.e. the law NOT applied to them.
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Old Apr 17th 2008, 8:11 pm
  #23  
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Default Re: Illegal House.

I'm sorry, It's probably me as I've just woken up, but this example used was the previous owner was living in a agricultural building and took it upon themselves to convert it into a dwelling, thus no planning permission was sought, offered or more importantly granted as least this is my understanding.

If you think a planning issue would not drag on for years in the UK then I think you're sadly wrong, I for one know of one example of my late grandmother which took over 4 years to sort out and this was directly to do with planning which was all sought, offered and then granted by a council official.

Like i said it's important to be objective.

I know this is going to cause some flak, but as I've been put in the position to have to say it, it really is buyer be aware. The new owners made a common mistake and I for one have witnessed within the last 3 years similar 'back handed' practices within the UK property market which unfortunately I can not go into details about as it is currently set to goto court and I don't want to risk anything when it comes to being able to nail an estate agency to the wall on something

The crux as you call it matters not that other people (probably Spanish) have had a blind eye turned, in the end of the day if the property was fully legal then there wouldn't be a problem and that in my opinion is the crux of the matter.

Obviously there are exceptions to my opinion, land grab etc etc.

Originally Posted by twyntub
No it wouldn't!

In the UK, key officials involved in town planning CANNOT live in the area in which they are planning. Our neighbour used to be one, and travelled over 600km each week to preside over planning meetings at the other end of the country. So none of this "doing your brother in law a favour" or "making sure your own house gets better treatment". Fair and objective decisions.

Secondly, in the UK there wouldn't be a SIX YEAR DELAY between the house being completed and the town hall knocking on the door to say "oops, sorry, we didn't notice that you'd done this".

It seems to me the crux of this matter isn't that these people are being made an example of. It's that lots of OTHER people in the area have had a blind eye turned i.e. the law NOT applied to them.

Last edited by zel; Apr 17th 2008 at 8:21 pm.
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Old Apr 17th 2008, 8:21 pm
  #24  
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Default Re: Illegal House.

Originally Posted by zel
I know this is going to cause some flak, but as I've been put in the position to have to say it, it really is buyer be aware. The new owners made a common mistake and I for one have witnessed within the last 3 years similar 'back handed' practices within the UK property market which unfortunately I can not go into details about as it is currently set to goto court and I don't want to risk anything when it comes to being able to nail an estate agency to the wall on something
Understood. It's true that these things do go on in the UK, but in Spain it's almost official policy!

You hear stories in the press and on the net every week where almost everyone in the chain: the vendor, estate agent, solicitors, architect, planning officers, the mayor and even the bank manager can be league together...
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Old Apr 17th 2008, 8:33 pm
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Default Re: Illegal House.

Well in my book, this is another example of not trusting the estate agent to do everything for you in the first place. I know it is difficult when you are new to the area, or even new to the country, to find reliable independent help but from my own experience of buying here, the estate agent did offer to do everything for me but I got my own solicitor to take care of the details for me. He wasnt perfect but at least the agent could not get away with too much. I would only use an estate agent to find the property in the first place. Everything else you have to check out yourself or have it checked out by someone you employ, not someone the seller employs. So far we have looked at a few fincas on the med coast and every one has problems enough for us to walk away.
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Old Apr 17th 2008, 8:38 pm
  #26  
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Default Re: Illegal House.

Originally Posted by twyntub
Understood. It's true that these things do go on in the UK, but in Spain it's almost official policy!

You hear stories in the press and on the net every week where almost everyone in the chain: the vendor, estate agent, solicitors, architect, planning officers, the mayor and even the bank manager can be league together...
Yeah but as I have mentioned, it's important to be objective and treat every example here as a single entity and not just lump it into what you've just described.

As we've seen quite a few times on here a decent portion of issues that have come up in the past could have been avoided by seeking independent legal advice from a lawyer that wasn't recommended by the vendor/estate agent, possibly one not even from the same town/area.

In this case I really hope the new owners got a translation in writing and not a verbal one as then I would hope they have a good case against them/him/her. You would hope (not assume as this is Spain after all) if someone is qualified to give translations from a legal document that they are insured for instances like this and thus the new owners may be able to achieve a decent level of damages.

Last edited by zel; Apr 17th 2008 at 8:42 pm.
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Old Apr 17th 2008, 8:46 pm
  #27  
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Default Re: Illegal House.

Originally Posted by scampicat
They bought a house around two years ago in good faith and now they are being taken to court because it is classed as as an illegal dwelling in the Parque Natural.
Scampicat, you haven't said how this problem came to light. My guess is the reason the local authority has singled them out is because one of their neighbours (who knows perfectly well all the property in the zone is illegal) has denounced them. Once this has happened the local authority can no longer turn the blind eye they did before the compliant.
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Old Apr 17th 2008, 8:56 pm
  #28  
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Default Re: Illegal House.

Originally Posted by zel
If you think a planning issue would not drag on for years in the UK then I think you're sadly wrong, I for one know of one example of my late grandmother which took over 4 years to sort out and this was directly to do with planning which was all sought, offered and then granted by a council official.



Obviously there are exceptions to my opinion, land grab etc etc.
A client of mine who is a property developer gets me in to do all his gardens when his bunch of club footed builders are done, and to date he has never sought planning for the vast majority of the jobs he does, he gets outline permission then uses it as ticket to do whatever he wants.


At the very worse he simply applies for retrospective, and is not averse to paying for the odd holiday or pay for the odd birthday party for certain councillors.
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Old Apr 17th 2008, 11:19 pm
  #29  
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Default Re: Illegal House.

Seems to me many of these "houses" only become illegal when they are bought by a foreigner ie. Brit. Everyone knows everyone in small pueblos and the authorities must have know the nave was being built as a house!
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Old Apr 17th 2008, 11:21 pm
  #30  
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Default Re: Illegal House.

Originally Posted by bokeh
Scampicat, you haven't said how this problem came to light. My guess is the reason the local authority has singled them out is because one of their neighbours (who knows perfectly well all the property in the zone is illegal) has denounced them. Once this has happened the local authority can no longer turn the blind eye they did before the compliant.
But doesn't that mean that the complainant's property is probably illegal as well? A counter-complaint might just serve them right.
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