New insurance for home owners & council criticised over planning process

Posted: 25/05/2012

A new insurance has been launched designed to protect home owners and home buyers from previously committed breaches of planning regulations.

The insurance has been set up by First Title after the introduction of the Localism Act 2011, which has formed new enforcement powers when a building is in breach of planning control. Previous to this new law, planning control was unaffected from enforcement if no action was taken within a set time period. 

You become in breach of the Localism Act 2011 if you deliberately conceal any planning control such as an extension to a building without planning permission or the use of an out building changing from a storage space into a place of employment, without informing planners.

If this is the case, it could result in the building without planning permission facing demolition, even if you were unknown to the fact it did not have planning consent when you bought the property.

First Title’s new insurance covers home owners against loss in value of their property as a result of the enforcement under the Localism Act 2011.

In other news, The Local Government Ombudsman has criticised Wolverhampton City Council over the way it handled their town centre regeneration project

One businesswoman who owns three buildings in the town centre was approached by the council who wanted to demolish her buildings so they could construct a pedestrian link from the urban village to the town centre.

However, since she was approached by the council in 2004, she has been very unsatisfied with the communications over the future of her buildings.

Watchdog filed a report and claimed the council had failed to properly manage the project, which forced the businesswoman to incur unnecessary costs.

The Ombudsman report highlighted how Wolverhampton City Council should not have embarked on a negotiation process within a four year period, if it was never in a position to purchase the buildings, even if a price has been agreed at the start.

The council has accepted the Ombudsman and Watchdog report and apologised to the local businesswoman and paid her £1,000 in compensation for her distress and occurrence of unnecessary costs.

Would you be interested in taking out the new insurance policy if you’re uncertain a building you own was granted planning permission?

Amanda McGovern, Pali Ltd
www.paliltd.com

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(0) Comments property, planning permission, insurance, council

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