One of our search technicians Dawn and her husband David were speaking to friends one day about property and one of their friends mentioned how their next-door neighbour’s house could be theirs in 18 months, explaining that if a person gave their house keys to someone else and didn’t return for 12 years then they could legally claim the property as theirs. Almost 12 years ago this did happen.
The friends next-door neighbour who owned the property moved into a nursing home. The owner’s son, who also lived with her in the property, was told by the council that the house would have to be sold to pay for the care she was receiving at the home. The son gave the house keys to the neighbours and he moved away.
A few months later David and Dawn were looking for their own house together and decided they wanted to try and find the owner of the house and tell him about the adverse possession rights and ask him if they could buy the property off him. They tried to find where the man was now, but other friends couldn’t locate him. Dawn then went to the council and checked his name on the electoral roll where they luckily found him since he registered 12 months ago. The son was now living in West Kirby on the Wirral, so Dawn and David went to his home to tell him what was going on with the property and how he could soon lose out.
He went on to explain that the solicitors had lost his mothers will when moving offices and he decided to leave it there. We told him to go back to the solicitors and ask for the will and go to probate, but he said he couldn’t afford to so David and Dawn paid for both the probate and a valuation of the property.
The neighbour who kept hold of the keys found out what they were up to and approached the man in West Kirby offering him £1000 more for the property than what Dawn was offering. The son declined this offer, he said because if it wasn’t for David and Dawn telling him anything, he was prepared to keep the property.
David and Dawn then agreed a price and bought the property off the son for a smaller price than its worth as it needed a great deal doing to it. The man happily accepted the price as he said if it wasn’t for David and Dawn he wouldn’t have even had that.
Dawn said “Morecrofts Solicitors were the ones that informed David and I about adverse possession and they were excellent throughout the entire process”.
To find out more about adverse possession also known as squatter rights CLICK HERE
Melissa Hogan, Pali Ltd