What Other Options Are There If Neighbours Are Causing House Sale Issues?
Selling to cash buyers provides a straightforward solution if nightmarish neighbours are hindering a sale but this route may not suit all scenarios or align with a seller’s preferences despite its advantages.
Here are some alternative options which may resolve neighbour problems without resorting immediately to discount sales:
Before taking legal routes, consider mediation sessions where an impartial trained mediator facilitates open completely honest dialogue between yourself and the problematic neighbours.
The mediator establishes ground rules ensuring respectful discussions aiming to acknowledge issues mutually and then negotiate practical compromises. Eg you limit viewing times in return for access promised without disturbances.
Mediation can mend neighbour relations positively, create formal agreements over conduct during the sales process and resolve situations without heavy legal costs or proceedings.
- Success depends heavily upon neighbour cooperation however and willingness to moderate their behaviours. Some may refuse or pay lip service without changing actions. Trust depends on extensive goodwill from all parties.
Local Council Complaints & Legal Action
Where extremely anti-social, aggressive or abusive neighbour problems continue despite mediation efforts or refractory denials, formal complaints to local police or councils may follow.
- Log detailed incident diaries capturing times, dates and exact behaviour then present them to authorities.
- Emphasise conduct directly hindering house sales including harassment of potential buyers.
- Provide documentary evidence like photos, video footage or demand letters sent to the disruptive party.
Once complaints are filed and investigated, several legal options exist provided sufficient supporting evidence:
Injunctions – These court orders forbid the continuation of behaviours that cause harassment, alarm or distress. Breaching injunctions become a contempt of court issue with heavy fines or jail terms for those ignoring court instructions.
ASBOs / CRASBOs – Anti-Social Behaviour Orders ban disruptive individuals from conducting problems or entering defined areas like your property perimeter. Breaches also risk fines and potential custodial sentences as contempt of court matters. Civil orders don’t require the criminal burden of proof.
Noise Abatement Orders – Formal notices served on noisy neighbours demanding reductions where levels exceed permitted decibels. Usually insist upon property inspections, soundproofing, and amended behaviours with ongoing monitoring.
Eviction – In serious rental dispute cases, landlords can be petitioned to evict seriously disruptive tenants after certain complaint thresholds are met.
These enforcement options provide legal weight stopping neighbours’ conduct that interferes with property sales. Naturally, seek legal advice proving neighbourhood interference before pursuing such formal complaints initially.
Adjust Your Marketing Strategy With The Estate Agent
If you decide to proceed to try to sell on the open market regardless of uncooperative neighbours, adjust your marketing strategy to minimise disruptions:
- Drastically reduce asking prices to grab attention from bargain hunters who’ll overlook external issues around a low-cost purchase perceiving value offsetting problems
- Highlight suitability for builders, renovators, and investors again targeting those parties less bothered by poor neighbourhood visuals or curb appeal. Focus on internals and structural soundness.
- Be transparent about the extent of neighbour problems allowing buyers to prepare for this rather than creating surprises later that might backfire on the sale process.
- Limit viewing slots strictly to daylight hours or 30-minute slots to minimise exposure periods to noisy disputes.
- Provide house keys for external viewings without needing access via gardens with problem neighbours directly beside access routes
- Install screen fencing, entrance side gates or privacy boards to stop neighbouring properties from impacting viewings quite so intrusively.
Essentially improvise ways of managing external undesirables from hindering viewings of the property itself by preparing solutions demonstrating how new owners can overcome issues.
Rent Not Sell
Renting out your home instead of selling removes the need to interact with neighbours at all if disputes are utterly intractable.
It retains your ability to realise financial gain from the property without time limitations dealing with volatile owners nearby. Rental income delivers similar yields to banking sale proceeds then repurchasing again.
For long-term landlord benefits do extensively soundproof internally minimising noise transference issues and stipulate tenant responsibilities in managing their behaviours towards aggravating area disputes.
The key downside of this is the inability to bank lump sums from property sales during disputes. Still, this option does allow you to escape untenable situations from immediately impacting your daily life.
Physical Avoidance Of Neighbour Disputes
When neighbours prove hugely problematic some sellers simply stay elsewhere during viewings. This reduces the chances of tensions boiling over ruining sales progression.
Stay with friends, and relatives or even rent temporary short-term lodgings during the marketing process, creating distance. It in no way resolves neighbourhood frictions but separates you from immediate problems buyers witness harming desirability.
Use agents extensively showing viewers around properties then vacate before pre arranged appointments. Return once buyers have left the site to get agent feedback safely away from inflammatory situations sparking confrontations and blowing sales apart.
It’s not easy to combine viewings whilst living at the home full time of course, but where viable it does place you apart from simmering problems with neighbours that may intimidate viewers that are a little bit too far.
Review Boundaries That Can Cause A Neighbour Dispute
Finally, check physical boundaries around the property have not crept over time if long-standing boundary disputes exist with neighbours.
Ensure any fences, garden walls, hedgerows or markers lie 100% on the property’s legal boundary lines as neighbours can often slowly encroach on neighbouring property by annexing lands in their favour during disputes.
Correct any sections overstepping actual divide lines that rightfully belong within your title plans. Use land registry plans and oblige authorities or solicitors to restore rightful ownership and prevent hostile land grabs from overshadowing sales.
Seek Early Assistance From Solicitors Too
Solicitors can advise upon applicable laws in specific circumstances where neighbours violate property rights and highlight courses of action that can deal with socially abusive conduct that is interfering with sales.
Attempting injunctions or eviction routes without sufficient supportive evidence can be tricky though, so do record incidents diligently to demonstrate the unreasonable behaviour affecting your sale.