Access to my neighbour's land

I want to carry out repair work to my property, but I need to gain access to my neighbour's property to do this. Am I allowed?You should start by taking an informal approach and speaking to your neighbour to see if you could reach an agreement regarding access.

I want to carry out repair work to my property, but I need to gain access to my neighbour's property to do this. Am I allowed?

You should start by taking an informal approach and speaking to your neighbour to see if you could reach an agreement regarding access. If this is not possible, then you will need to use the law to secure access. You may already have express rights of entry onto neighbouring property, specifically for the purposes of inspection or repair in the property's title documentation. You should arrange for a solicitor to check your title deeds. If you do not have express rights, then it is possible to rely on the Access to Neighbouring Land Act 1992 by making an application to the court for an access order.

What type of work will the court grant an access order for?

Access will be granted to carry out basic preservation work that includes:

t Maintenance, repair or renewal of any part of a structure or building on the property

t Repair, clearance or renewal of drains, sewers, pipes or cables

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t Work to trees and other growing things that are insecurely rooted, dead or in danger of becoming damaged, diseased or dangerous

Will my application to the court be successful?

In order for your application to be successful you must show that:

t The work is reasonably necessary for the preservation of all or part of your property

t The work cannot be done, or it would be substantially more difficult to do the work, if you cannot get access to your neighbour's land.

If you can satisfy the court's criteria then, yes, your application should be successful.

What happens if I damage my neighbour's land in the process of carrying out the work?

Under the access order you must make good any damage caused. A record as to the condition of your neighbour's land may be required by the court before they will allow works to start in order to evidence any damage done following the works.

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