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Kassee | 10:43 Tue 20th Oct 2015 | Law
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Not sure if this is gardening - or law ? In short the house next door was sold, and the land was sold off to a builder. The original house was sold with garden, and then two more plots were fenced off, one sold and one just completed but not sold yet. There is now a small rectangle piece of land left full of overgrown trees and shrubs that seems to have been fenced around and left. It is directly behind my garden. The chap living in the original house is keen for me to take ownership, as this will prevent it becoming overgrown. And at the moment, it could belong to him, me or the house that has not been sold yet.

What do you think? What problems am I likely to have in the future ? Once the builders go, could there be any problems ?


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If the land belongs to him and is not part of the Plot that is for sale its a simple process. He applies to the Land Registry to transfer ownership of the 'land marked in red' to you for the sum you agree to. We did it when selling off a building plot and they wanted a bit extra garden from a field we owned behind the plot.
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The thing is - the land doesnt belong to anybody. The builder has fenced the properties off, so that it is not a part of anyone's garden.

If the piece of land is at thebottom of your garden why don't you just remove some of your fence so that the land is part of your garden? After a few years (12?, 13?) the land will become yours by squatter's rights provided that no-one shows that the land belongs to rhem in the meantime.
kassee not true the land does belong to someone -the original owner owned all of the land and sold it to a builder, therefore either the builder owns the land, or the original owner that owned the complete property. If it were me I would ask the person who fenced the land off (the builder?) if he owns the land and if so would he sell you it.
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Thank you. The original owner has died. The builder seems to have completed his work, altho I have his number.
Kassee the best idea is to call the builder. Land is expensive and its not usual for a builder to fence off a peice and not use it. It may have been fenced off for important reasons -old unstable land drains or a sink hole.
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I know its unusual. The land was sold off in bits and pieces. Each of the properties have a regular garden with a fence round and this bit is left, fenced off by all the properties, It just happens to be on the back of my garden (which originally was part of the same plot) but many years ago.
Kassee it could be you actually own that bit of land. Can you access your property plans via Land registry? If the plots have been sold recently then the builder would have formed the boundaries using the land he had purchased -maybe he has ring fenced that piece of land as it showed up on the Registry as not belonging to the owner who he purchased the building land from.
You can get the land registry plans for all the land, not just the part you know you own. If you do, you will find out whether this plot is shown on any of them. If it is not then it is unregistered land and trying to take it over under adverse possession rules could well work.
Just because land is unregistered, doesn't mean that it's not owned and adverse possession is not as straightforward as people tend to think that it is.

It's also good to bear in mind that the land may have problems or liabilities that, even if the land was given or sold to you, you wouldn't want to take on.

Whether there could be problems is not an easy question as there is a lot we don't know. Is there any access to this parcel of land at all, not necessarily just to it, but can it be accessed generally or is it "locked" in by other properties?
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Its only a small bit of land and locked in by garden fences.

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