View Full Version : Who owns possessions left in house
I have recently moved house, A garden shed was offered to me to buy but was too small and I refused, On completion the shed had not been moved so instead of buying a new one I made do. Three weeks after I moved in the seller came and said they wanted to take it. I said it was too late as I was now using it. He is now accusing me of theft and threatening me. Who is right. I cannot contact a solicitor until Monday
Well it depends on what is included in the contract.
If the shed is included in the fixtures and fittings then it's yours.
However if it's not then it's the previous occupants.
You could argue that it's on your property and possession is 9 tenths of the law, thus making it yours.
You could also argue that you had an agreement with the vendor (verbal) that they said you could keep it upon moving in.
I think it's also possible, since it's on your property that you could 'charge' the previous vendor say £200 to gain access to your property to 'clear' the shed.
They'd probably leave it then since, they could buy new for that much.
The shed belonged to the tenant who could not take it. It seems she made an arrangement with the owner to let him have it It was not in the fixtures & fittings But I thought that the seller had to remove all of their items for the completion date.
I might that the shed is farly old 6 x 8 with a broken top piece. I am also accused of breaking into the shed which I did not as it was not locked.
You buy something with 'vacant posession' so everything that is left there can be assumed to be unwanted, and you can do with it as you wish. Usually it's a pain having to remove it.
On this occasion it gets a bit grey because you discussed buying it, but I would still say that you owned it, regardless of any fixtures and fittings.
It's obviously bothering you over the weekend, so...
All in all, and because you said you 'didn't want it', and because it's 'too small'... and because it's a crummy broken shed, and for a quiet life ...let them take it away.
Thanks for your reply. I am 75 years old and intended to put a new shed on the base. Because he didnt take it and I could not move it After a couple of weeks I bought one of those £99 plastic ones to go with it.
All in all I am going to have to buy the shed I wanted and then I wont need the plastic one so I lose £99-00.
I didnt actually go into buying the shed. He asked me if I wanted to buy it and I said no because I would be buying a bigger one.
Anyway many thanks for taking the time to reply. In his letter he gave an ultimatum of tonight and he will take furthur action. so I will contact my solicitor first thing. I am now at the stage where I know I am being bullied by someone who thinks they can walk all over an old person.
Bullying must always be stopped!
I do think that by leaving the shed and handing over the keys they have given up any right to remove it later. Of course, for the quiet life that's not the point, but this is obviously a bit more complicated than simple facts.
Check the sale particulars and the sale contract and the schedules of fixtures and fittings that were received.
Does it mention the shed anywhere?
Discussing it should be (in my opinion) outside the contract, after all, you have a written, signed contract of sale, which will take precedence over any claim of a 'verbal contract' over the shed. The shed is a fixture and is a part of the property.
If the shed is not mentioned anywhere in writing I would think you would be able to claim it as a fixture of the property... ie "too late pal, I bought it, you sold it, hard luck".
The Conditions of Sale may have been altered though, so double check this aspect.
Additionally, you should be able to claim 'compensation' for removal of a fixture before you took possession, it's not so clear cut though as they want it after! I would think £250 compensation (or the cost of a new replacement shed, including erection) should be about right. ;)
All in all, I think you are well within your legal rights to keep it, and if you are feeling bullied then consult your solicitor. You took VP (vacant possession) on the contracted day, and that's it!
Regardless of the above though, you still have to remember if it's worth the £99 for the hassle.
Got a mate of mine who's a third year law student to have a quick view of your first message and he came back with this.
Alright, save me registering. Sheds are not part of the fixtures and fittings, so would not normally be included in the sale. HOwever, things depending on usage etc are always borderline issues. I would suggest they come to an agreement themselves, and not go to court or anything. I wouldnt be 100% certain who would win
Hope this helps.
What would have happened had you removed the shed and erected a new one? What would the vendor have been able to do about it? You had informed him that you did not want the shed so, imo, you would have been entitled to remove it once you had possession of the property. The same should apply when using it. Under the contract all the previous owner's possessions should have been removed on completion date, after that it's your property, imo.
I suggest you contact the Citizens' Advice Bureau rather than pay a solicitor. Alternatively, if you're a retired member of a trade union you will still be elligible for free legal advice (with most unions anyway).
Thanks for all your information. We have now contacted our Solicitor who has said that as he ticked a box to say he was taking it is still legally his even though he did not remove it on completion ( we can now charge him ground rent). If we had skipped the shed he would be able to claim from us for a new one. I think the law is an ass..... What if he had not removed anything from the house whoes furniture would have been left out in the rain Ours and got ruined or his so that he could then claim on us if it was ruined. The solicitor also said that we could have had it removed and stored and then the seller would have had to pay the bill. Ill bet he would!
The man involved is not a nice person and as this is about my Mother who is 75 years old and now stressed right out the family have persuaded her to let him have it between 10.00 & 11.00 on Sunday and we will all watch him.
Thanks for your interest