Forcing Completion and habitation licences

LoadingFavourite

This topic contains 47 replies, has 15 voices, and was last updated by Profile photo of Anonymous Anonymous 9 years, 11 months ago.

  • Author
    Posts
  • #51955
    Profile photo of Anonymous
    Anonymous
    Participant

    I am another purchaser who is currently being bullied by developer and advised by lawyer to complete on a property in Elviria which as yet does not have a habitation licence in place.

    I have so far had all the usual cock and bull excuses and threats as I have read so many times on this Forum. I have advised my lawyer that I am fully aware of current legalities and despite this my position to hold out on completion is still being threatened.

    Information from my lawyer is as follows:

    Points:

    1.- It is true this contract should be signed before the notary office on December of 2005 however that does not mean the developer has broken the purchaser contract because:

    1.1.- On December 2005 the house is finished (apparently) and the developer had already asked the City Hall for the Habitation Licence and they are waiting since then the reply from the City Hall. So, the Developer was not liable for this delay.

    1.2.- We have admitted to wait so, nobody can be responsible if the another side admit to wait. We never have wanted to cancel the purchase contract for this reason.

    2.- The property CAN ALREADY BE REGISTERED on the Land Register Office in these circumstances and to have or not a Habitation Licence is not relevant to the Land Register Office. However the particular connexions for water and electricity will need Habitation Licence although the developer will provide you these supplies till get this final licences. However, I insist, the property can be registered on the land register office on your name and already.

    3.- The mortgage or loans or debits the Developer has won’t affect your property once this property is signed before the notary offices. However these debits could be affected your property if you don’t sign just because if you don’t sign the property will continue on the land register office as a developer’s property. This point is very important.

    4.- The situation of this promotion is completely different with the most of AIFOS development I am acting On the cases I have AIFOS has not building licence or AIFOS has not registered the property on the land register office or the AIFOS building licence has been contested by a Public Resolution because was obtained by a illegal Building Regulation.. These circumstances do not not happen on this development.

    5.- The rules about the Administrative Silence have not changed. These rules were fixed by a formal ACT (by Spanish and Andalucia government) and these acts do not change as simply as the person of OMIC has reported you. The ACT about Administrative Silence must be respected by everybody and of course by the Marbella City Hall. They (Marbella City Hall) have nor respected the term of 3 months for answering the applied Habitation Licence (2nd of December 2.005) by the developer. So, the City Hall would be responsible but not the developer.

    6.- So, I foresee if the title deed is not signed on the 7th of this month the developer will cancel the purchase contract and will keep the 50% of you money and you will have to claim (maybe against the City Hall) for you money in a long a expensive legal procedure and the developer position is not absolutely wrong.

    7.- We have received on Friday a developer communication in this sense. They are required to you for signing this day (7th July) and if not they are going to cancel the purchase contract.

    Can anyone comment on this information?

  • #63289
    Profile photo of Anonymous
    Anonymous
    Participant

    Hi, view previous topic from Charlie and Sofia. I hope to be close to your stage soon.Interested in how you get on.

  • #63291
    Profile photo of Melosine
    Melosine
    Participant

    You don’t state it but you obviously have a lawyer who has been recommended by ,and working for Aifos.

    Have you not read and taken heed of recent letters on this forum ????

    The ” farewell letter from Charlie and Sophie” answers ALL your queries.
    Now it’s up to you

  • #63292
    Profile photo of Anonymous
    Anonymous
    Participant

    It may be true that you can register the property without the license – however, you will not obtain contracts for water or electricity or gas.

    The developer will not ‘let’ you have these utilities, he will simply maintain the existing temporary building supply. Remember, this type of low-power supply is offered for the duration of construction and is not secure.

    The license is, in effect, proof that the local council has signed off the project. If they have not issued the licence then there is a reason. You could reasonably refuse to sign without the licence and leave it at that.

    However, if I were in your shoes, I would want to know why the council has not issued the license. Visit the local planning office and they will tell you.

    By the way, who introduced the lawyer to you?

  • #63293
    Profile photo of katy
    katy
    Spectator

    The licences aren’t being issued because Elviria is in marbella. For some developments its just a delay but for others they may never get a licence. If its too late to change lawyers before the seventh I would go along to the notary (with proof that you have the funds in Spain) take along a translator and inform the notary that there is no FLO and you are being threatened with losing your money.

  • #63294
    Profile photo of Anonymous
    Anonymous
    Participant

    Katy’s advice sounds good to me. However, I am not a lawyer and it may be important to observe certain legal niceties while refusing to complete. I have no direct experience of this point. If you are here in Spain, then surely you have enough time to gather the papers and get another legal opinion.

  • #63304
    Profile photo of Anonymous
    Anonymous
    Participant

    Ali C

    I think Katy’s advice is spot on.

    This is obviously a prime example of bullying/intimidating tactics by your developer and ‘your’ lawyer.

    If you would like, send me a PM with your e-mail address, may be able to help via my lawyer before 7th.

    Barbara

  • #63377
    Profile photo of Anonymous
    Anonymous
    Participant

    Hang on.

    There’s so much confusion around the question of LFOs that I’ve decided to write an article on it. I’m in the process of researching it, which means talking to lots of different lawyers.

    What I have discovered so far is that there are circumstances when a good lawyer, with nothing but his client’s interests at heart, will recommend signing before the LFO has been produced.

    Advising to sign without an LFO is very much the exception to the rule, but in SOME cases it is the best advice.

    Although it is sometimes sensible to sign without an LFO (in some exceptional cases), it is NEVER sensible to sign if there was no original building licence, or the licence was illegal.

    Every case has to be examined on its own merit.

    The truth is that none of use can advise Ali C because we don’t know the details of his/her case, and we aren’t trained lawyers. However, I wanted to point out that it might be possible that this lawyer is offering the right advice.

    As always, it’s about integrity. A lawyer with integrity will be giving the right advice.

    Mark

  • #63378
    Profile photo of katy
    katy
    Spectator

    Yes Mark, take on what you say, but in the case of Ali C the property is in Marbella. The only legal builds are the ones in the 1986(?) plan and I don’t think much of Elviria was included in this plan.

  • #63380
    Profile photo of katy
    katy
    Spectator

    I have just read today’s Sur which reports that a block of 63 apartments near the Don Carlos Hotel (Elviria)was sealed off by police yesterday despite the fact that many owners have completed and some have furnished their places. They have even held their first community meeting. They must have received good advice ❗ from their lawyers. May not be a legal expert but some of the lawyers are at bit economical with the facts.
    BTW the apartment block is Hacienda Las Chapas.

  • #63383
    Profile photo of Anonymous
    Anonymous
    Participant

    Just read article that states

    “The builder retains ownership until the property is completed. It is only when the necessary certicates of building completion (fin de obra) and 1st occupation (primer ocupacion) have been issued that the escritura for the sale can be finalised.”

  • #63385
    Profile photo of Anonymous
    Anonymous
    Participant

    oh, please……..because of all the advice on here, i’ve been banging on to people about not completing on Angel de Miraflores because we have no habitation licence amongst other things, and now i’m told in some cases we should?

    if we do complete and find the rumoured sewage in stream problem is a reality, or anything else for that matter, and could take months/years to sort out, what then?

    Can we find out from the issuing council the truth about the site and likelihood of getting a habitation licence in the near future?

    Can we be forced to complete without the licence or lose our deposit in exceptional circumstances?

  • #63387
    Profile photo of Anonymous
    Anonymous
    Participant

    Dorothy – Thank you! 😀

    Mark – Ali C is being forced/intimidated by her lawyer and the developer to complete tomorrow on a property at Santa Maria Village that has no Licence of First Occupation and only builder’s supply of water and electricity.

    Katerina and I feel, and having run the situation by our lawyer – he agrees, that she is not legally obliged to complete in these circumstances.

    Even Drakan (lawyer who contributes here on this forum) says it is ‘insane’ to complete without an LFO.

    This lawyer also insists to Ali C that even without an LFO, she can legally register the property in her name. This goes against everything I have read in the spanish law……(totally as an amateur, I admit).

    So I am sorry Mark that for the first time, I have to disagree with your above post.
    I informed you that her lawyer was one recommended on your forum, and am sorry to say that your post makes me feel that possibly you are trying to defend that recommendation?

    I know, of course, that all your recommendations are made totally without self-interest and are made purely to help those that need help in finding a good recommended independent lawyer. Often in situations where they have been badly let down by their original lawyer.

    But I do feel that when it is becoming clear that one of your recommendations is not working out as it should, you should be made aware.

    For the last two days, Ali C has tried to obtain from this ‘recommended’ lawyer a copy of her Bank Guarantee (never sent) and a copy of the building licence.

    Do you know what – ABSOLUTELY NOTHING IN RESPONSE!!!!
    Despite for two days she has sent urgent requests – he has just ignored her on this.

    Yet miraculously, instead, he has found the time and inclination during these two days to

    a) write to her warning her of the consequences of her not completing tomorrow (i.e. she will have her contract cancelled and will lost 50% of the monies she has paid), and

    b) writing to the developer informing them of her decision not to complete.

    I am sorry Mark, but despite what you have written, I feel Ali C’s lawyer is not acting in her best interests, and at the very least ignores her request for a copy of her Bank Guarantee, which is her legal right to have.

    This lawyer verbally agreed an extension of time re. completion for Santa Maria Village with the developer (they are grossly in breach of contract with the completion date).

    I am wondering whether he failed to bother to get an extension to the Bank Guarantee as well to cover this extra period.

    IS THIS WHY HE IS TOO EMBARRASSED TO SEND A COPY?
    IT IS EITHER OUT OF DATE – OR WORSE STILL, MAYBE THERE JUST ISN’T ONE !

    Barbara

  • #63389
    Profile photo of Anonymous
    Anonymous
    Participant

    Santa Maria Village was built by a development company very well known to Barbara & I. It is just around the corner from where our apartments were to have been built and if you carry on the road past the lower blocks of Green Hills you arrive at what can only be described as a “Ghost Town”, Santa Maria Village! All of these developments have the same problem …they have no LFO as their legality is being investigated. People like AliC are being pushed into completion because I would guess that this company is in the proverbial mire, financially,because so many people are not making final payments. They only have themselves to blame 😈

  • #63390
    Profile photo of Anonymous
    Anonymous
    Participant

    Mark –

    having re-read your post a couple more times now, am really interested to ‘learn’ what exactly constitutes “exceptional circumstances”?

    This is a genuine question.

    The problem with all these new developments in the area of Elviria Sur (east of Marbella) is that according to the 1986 plan of the ‘Junta de Andalucia’ (regional government, as against local government) – this area was supposed to only have an urbanisation along the main road (more or less) and the countryside behind was only designated as green belt, ‘pueblos mediterraneous’ – basically individual residential dwellings, and public areas/parks, a school, sport facilities for the children etc. for the original residents of Elviria Sur.

    Then of course, there has been the corrupt years, starting with Mayor Gil giving out building licences for large backhanders.

    For years now, the residents have been protesting to the Town Hall in Marbella (with the help and support of ‘The Ecologists’) against the abuse of this area which has been given over to developers.

    A whole pine forest was even destroyed to make way for the development cordoned off today.

    THIS is why our development and all the others are now being investigated and/or closed off by the police – the Junta is closing in.

    Would you like to pay completion money for a property in Elviria Sur at the moment?

    This is why, in Ali C’s case, it is not advisable to complete -there are no ‘exceptional circumstances’ that I can think of.

    Why the sudden and threatening pressure to complete by the developer??

    Barbara

  • #63391
    Profile photo of Anonymous
    Anonymous
    Participant

    Some publicity on one development without the LFO

    diariomalagahoy.es/diariomalagahoy/articulo.asp?idart=1266768&idcat=2830

  • #63392
    Profile photo of Melosine
    Melosine
    Participant

    Interesting. So according to _ _ _ _ _ it’s not their fault but the buyers 😯 and banks 😈

    _ _ _ _ _ argues that it has given the keys of 500 houses that lacked license of first occupation by one double pressure: on the one hand, the one of the buyers that insist on taking possession from their properties and, by another one, because the banks also demand the delivery to be able to receive the mortgages.

    IF so why haven’t we any postings from harrassed developers then if this is the disgraceful way buyers act ???? 😆

    Thanks Dorothy .
    Any more little gems like that.

  • #63393
    Profile photo of Anonymous
    Anonymous
    Participant

    same development…….waiting 4 years for LFO

    devwatch.com/events/show/111

  • #63394
    Profile photo of Anonymous
    Anonymous
    Participant

    Isn’t there any kind Spanish speaking person on the board that could ring the town hall to find out the state of affairs at Angel Miraflores for Goodstich? 😀

  • #63395
    Profile photo of Anonymous
    Anonymous
    Participant

    Katerina? 🙂 although she DOES live in Crete! Katy? 🙂

  • #63396
    Profile photo of Anonymous
    Anonymous
    Participant

    Dorothy –

    I think it will be very unlikely one can get anywhere on the telephone with the Town Planning in this ‘day and age’.

    Before Christmas, I telephoned the Town Planning to make an enquiry re. our particular development.
    I was promptly put through to the legal department, spoke to a very nice lady who introduced herself as one of the lawyers there and who was very helpful. She gave me some very good advice.

    After all the ‘problems’ began with the Town Hall, I telephoned again as I needed to ask her another question.

    I got through to the same lady, who this time cut me short, said she couldn’t answer any questions over the ‘phone, and put the telephone down!

    And at that point, the arrests hadn’t started, just the ‘looming clouds’!

    I think maybe the only way is to go there personally, with i.d. and a copy of your contract – or your lawyer does it on your behalf.

    Just my opinion.
    Katerina

  • #63399
    Profile photo of Anonymous
    Anonymous
    Participant

    If you read a bit of Spanish, see also another very interesting article in diario malaga (today’s edition COSTA) about the dealings of the ex-head of Town Planning in Marbella, Sr Roca……… and how he granted building licences, LFOs and ignored suspension orders in exchange for money from the developers.

    These were the famous ‘convenios’ – special deals made between the Planning Authorities and the developers, and quote: ‘whereby land is re-zoned to permit greater building in exchange for part of the builders’ profits going into the Town’s coffers’ unquote.

    However, this money – as we all know, and the article confirms – did not end up in the Town’s coffers but rather in the private coffers of Snr. Roca and his buddies.

    quote: ‘This is neither illegal nor corrupt, as the profits help all residents of the Town, but it can harm the interests of those who have already purchased’ unquote (‘You and the law in Spain’, by David Searl, 14th edition 2003.)

    Unfortunately, neither the people of Marbella, nor the buyers have gained any benefits from these ‘legal deals’.

    However we now have to be thankful that the likes of Snr. Roca and corrupt developers (and may there be many more to follow..) are enjoying life behind prison bars for the misery, stress and financial hardship they have caused.

    Katerina

    PS And as the Spanish say “Hasta La Victoria Siempre”! 😉

  • #63401
    Profile photo of Anonymous
    Anonymous
    Participant

    I have spent hours today talking to lawyers and other people with some insight, all of whom have admitted that in some circumstances they might advise their clients to sign without an LFO.

    What circumstances? As usual, it’s complicated, real complicated, and I don’t have the time to describe in sufficient detail the kinds of scenarios they gave me as examples. However the crux is that, in every instance, the lawyer is sure that the LFO will be granted in a reasonable period of time, and has fully investigated the situation with the town hall. The lawyer then protects the buyer with all sorts of clauses that the developer agrees to. Also, the development always has to be 100% legal according to the most authoritative plan in force.

    So my point is this: that in some unusual cases it might make sense to complete without an LFO. However, this only applies in let’s say 1% of cases, so it’s almost irrelevant, and I almost now regret that I brought it up. I just want forum users to be aware that there can be exceptions to the rule. But in all of these cases you have to be able to trust your lawyer 100%, so as I said before, it boils down to the personal integrity of the people you deal with.

    Basically, there is some grey where all you want to see is black and white. It gets even worse when the subject of administrative silence is introduced. Turns out that it is a valid principle of law that applies to things like LFOs, but….it’s riskier than a definitive LFO. However, developers are (probably) within their rights to use an LFO obtained by administrative silence to declare a buyer in breach of contract if they don’t complete. Debatable? Yes. Contentious? Yes. Grey area? Yes. But that doesn’t mean to say that a developer won’t have a go, and might get away with it.

    And then there is the Marbella factor. In Marbella today, even a definitive LFO might later be declared illegal. The town hall is paralysed, nothing is certain, administrative silence under these circumstances is even more debatable than ever……chaos, basically. It seems to me that in Marbella one has to leave the world of certainties behind, and work with probabilities.

    The lawyers I have spoken to had some suggestions for people in this situation.

    One suggestion was to ask one’s lawyer to sign a document of assurance that the definitive LFO will be granted in a reasonable period of time. If it isn’t, then you sue your lawyer and the developer for damages. That is certainly one way of finding out how sure your lawyer is that nothing will go wrong.

    Another suggestion is a supplementary contract with the developer, including all sorts of clauses to protect you, principally to guarantee you uninterrupted access to all utilities until you can set-up property connections, with penalties if there are any interruptions. This is essential if one decides to go ahead without a definitive LFO. (Note: not having a definitive LFO is obviously much riskier than having one, but it does not necessarily mean that one will not be granted. And in Marbella, having one doesn’t necessarily mean that it is legal by the plan of ‘86).

    Another knowledgeable person in Marbella has a theory that Santa Maria Village is such a dump, which nobody is going to want to rent or buy, that one might be better off loosing 50% of the deposit (at least getting 50% back), rather than complete and have to sink even more money into such an awful place.But remember, it’s just one theory, one person’s opinion.

    Funny how none of the lawyers have allowed themselves to get sucked into this one.

    VERY IMPORTANT NOTE. I’M NOT A LAWYER, AND NOTHING I HAVE WRITTEN HERE SHOULD BE INTERPRETED AS A SUBSTITUTE FOR SEEKING LEGAL ADVICE FROM A PROFESSIONAL LAWYER.

    Mark

  • #63405
    Profile photo of Anonymous
    Anonymous
    Participant

    If the lawyers can’t agree on the state of LFO’s . Not much chance then for anyone else.

  • #63407
    Profile photo of Anonymous
    Anonymous
    Participant

    Dorothy

    exactly, plays straight in to the hands of the developer, what with that and some people happy to complete without the LFO as well? dosn’t give us, trying to work within the law and common sense much leverage!

    What a ridiculous situation.

  • #63409
    Profile photo of Anonymous
    Anonymous
    Participant

    Mark

    The lawyers I have spoken to had some suggestions for people in this situation……

    …..Another suggestion is a supplementary contract with the developer, including all sorts of clauses to protect you, principally to guarantee you uninterrupted access to all utilities until you can set-up property connections, with penalties if there are any interruptions….

    Is this lawyer you spoke to seriously connected to the real world out there in Spain?

    When people can’t get a simple crack in the plaster repaired by their developer during snagging, what chance of appearing in their office and saying “your builder’s supply had a power surge, my £1000 computer blew up – please make a cheque payable to……”.

    Just the fact that a lawyer actually thought this one up 🙄 speaks volumes of the kind of ‘legal advice’ that is out there.

    Barbara

  • #63410
    Profile photo of Anonymous
    Anonymous
    Participant

    @mark wrote:

    Another knowledgeable person in Marbella has a theory that Santa Maria Village is such a dump,

    I have to agree with that statement. It does not have a good feeling around it. JMO 🙁

    A long time ago, so it seems, 🙂 if I remember correctly, that in the case of an LFO, administrative silence cannot be used. Anyone who completes without an LFO in place, on the basis of “sort it out later” must be mad or stupid. That is just compounding their financial problem.

  • #63411
    Profile photo of Anonymous
    Anonymous
    Participant

    Mark, all that you have quoted goes completely against what Drakan & Cesar have been drumming into us until they must be blue in the face. I respect the advice they have kindly given to us. It has helped us immensely.

  • #63413
    Profile photo of Anonymous
    Anonymous
    Participant

    Here is what Cesar had to say about administrative silence

    Posted: Sun Mar 05, 2006 10:48 pm



    The 3 month Administrative silence rule has one clearly specified exception in Spanish Law (All Spain not only Andalucia): It cannot support an illegal situation…. so If you had the right to have your LFO as your house was built observing planning regulations and those planning regulations do observe the regional land law.. then you would get your LFO in 3 months if the local authorities do not answer you…

    But if you are asking for something illegal (imagine you ask for permission to build a house in a public park) or the local planning regulations are illegal: Marbella? Cabo de Gata?… you wont get your license as this rule cannot give you something that is forbidden… is just a rule made to soften bureaucracy not to overrule the law
    _________________
    César Fernández
    construction and planning Lawyer

  • #63414
    Profile photo of katy
    katy
    Spectator

    To sum up it seems that Ali C is being advised (by a recommended lawyer) to complete on a property in Elviria Marbella 😯 😯 Wonder what this lawyer would advise the people who bought in hacienda playa (Elivira) who completed and now find the place sealed off by police on Wednesday. This lawyer cannot have any inside information that everything will be OK as no-one in marbella town hall seems to know what their left arm is doing!

    To people who have not already bought DON’T BUY OFF-PLAN

  • #63421
    Profile photo of Anonymous
    Anonymous
    Participant

    Drakan wrote these wise words of commonsense on the Administrative Silence Rule:

    There are thousands upon thousands of illegal constructions going on. If this silence rule were to be applied then they would all be automatically legal.

    And of course, this is not going to happen, is it !!!!!

    This is why OMIC said this rule cannot apply anymore to new developments.

    BECAUSE OF THE CURRENT BACKLOG AND CHAOS AT THE TOWN HALL – IT IS NO LONGER WORKABLE.

    In my opoinion, anyone who still wants to clutch at this straw called Administrative Silence Rule has their head in the sand.

    And any lawyer still waving this rule under purchasers’ noses (in harmony with the developer) needs ………I really can’t think of an appropriate end to this sentence….[/u]

  • #63422
    Profile photo of Anonymous
    Anonymous
    Participant

    ” In my opoinion….. ” ?????

    I think I have ‘lost it’ …….. 😥

  • #63423
    Profile photo of Anonymous
    Anonymous
    Participant

    Are you trying to talk about your onions?

    Tell us more about the OMIC ruling please. This is the first I’ve heard of it.

    Mark

  • #63424
    Profile photo of Anonymous
    Anonymous
    Participant

    Mark: “Are you trying to talk about your onions?”

    Would have thought a ‘literate’ man like yourself could have guessed’ 😉

    Mark: “Tell us more about the OMIC ruling please. This is the first I’ve heard of it”.

    Mark, I didn’t say there was an OMIC ruling.

    I said: This is why OMIC said this rule cannot apply anymore to new developments……

    ….if you had read my post carefully, you would know I was referring to the Administrative Silence Rule, not OMIC’s rule.

    I am not sure if you quite understand the importance of this (government) public office.

    I have posted on several occassions on this forum as you well know, how we reported to OMIC our developer’s behaviour in bullying purchasers of the lower blocks at Green Hills to complete, despite there being no LFO in place.
    And the fact that they were dangling the Administrative Silence Rule as the ‘push’ to complete.

    The lady, Mercedes Bueno, who is in charge of the buildings and construction section of OMIC (“vivienda”), as a direct result of our complaint, demanded a meeting with our developer to explain themselves.

    As a result, because of OMIC’s pressure, the developer immediately retracted the pressure to complete until a LFO is in place, and conveniently dropped quoting the Administrative Silence Rule.

    But you know all this already when you telephoned us for an interview for your Sunday Times article in April.

    If you are unsure of the validity of what OMIC has to say, bearing in mind you are involved with the property arena in Spain, it may well be worth your while in spending some time with Mrs. Mercedes Bueno.

    And Mark – you praised my ‘Farewell from Charlie and Sofia’ post – why not take up my last line of advice – listen, learn and then ACT.

    Get yourself down to OMIC’s offices! ❗ ❗ ❗ ❗ ❗ ❗

    Barbara

  • #63427
    Profile photo of Anonymous
    Anonymous
    Participant

    I will go and see Mercedes Bueno when I’m next in Marbella.

    I repeat (ad nauseam) I’m not a lawyer, so I have little authority on this question. But, based on my recent conversations with a bunch of lawyers, from what I can tell the administrative silence (AS) principle is still valid for LFOs.

    Now it could well be that an LFO based on AS is completely unworkable under present conditions in Marbella. It wouldn’t surprise me. If so, then any developer trying to use it in Marbella today won’t get very far in court. Who knows what applies in Marbella these days!

    But not everyone reading this forum is interested in Marbella, so one also has to think about someone, say in Alicante, being presented with an LFO based on AS. It is not common, but it can happen, and it is not necessarily due to some conspiracy, but might just be due to an overworked town hall (there’s a lot of building going on in Spain, don’t you know).

    For what it’s worth, my advice is never complete without an LFO. You’ll find this repeated all over the website.

    But just be warned that the following scenario, though I guess highly unlikely, is possible (assume this scenario takes place anywhere but Marbella):

    You really want to complete on a property, but the developer only has an LFO derived from administrative silence (in the full sense, i.e. all the steps required to qualify for AS have been duly completed), you don’t accept that, so the developer declares you in breach of contract, keeps some or all of your deposit, and sells the property to someone else for a higher price (lets assume you bought off-plan 3 years ago, so prices have gone up and you had significant potential equity gains in the property). You take the developer to court, but the developer wins because the AS principle is valid.

    In the scenario above, the most sensible thing to do would be to accept the LFO derived from AS, and complete, assuming, of course, that the development is 100% legal in all other respects.

    So although I say never complete without an LFO, I would also be listening to my lawyer. I accept of course, that a prerequisite for success is a good lawyer, and many people who have bought in Spain used the kind of estate agents who recommend lawyers who fail to look after the buyers’ interests. I accept it’s not helpful to say ‘trust your lawyer’ if your lawyer isn’t doing a good job. I have no good answer to this problem.

    I’ve got nothing more to add to this topic. I’ll carry on looking into it, and will be delighted if at some point I can report that some bookish lawyer somewhere has found an arcane clause in some obscure statute that renders AS for LFOs null and void. But I can’t report that yet.

    And I would be delighted if someone, preferably a lawyer qualified in Spain, can correct me here on anything I have said. I’m not trying to defend any position, just understand the issues, and help others understand them in the process.

    One last point. If anyone reading this thread is facing the problem being discussed, i.e. being asked to complete without an LFO, then only use this thread to get an idea of the issues (main learing point being that in 99.9% of cases it is not sensible to complete without a definitive LFO), but don’t confuse it with qualified legal advice. Though I don’t doubt for one second the good intentions of everyone posting here, it has to be pointed out that none of the contributors to this thread have the necessary qualifications to post with sufficient authority (myself included).

    For anyone that can understand Spanish, here is the relevant clause in the statutes regarding AS. You might be able to get Google to translate it for you:

    Artículo 172. Procedimiento de otorgamiento de las licencias
    urbanísticas.

    La ordenación del procedimiento para el otorgamiento de
    las licencias urbanísticas municipales deberá ajustarse a las
    siguientes reglas:

    (cut the first 4 clauses for not being relevant)

    5.ã La resolución expresa deberá notificarse en el plazo
    máximo de tres meses. Transcurrido este plazo podrá entenderse,
    en los términos prescritos por la legislación reguladora
    del procedimiento administrativo común, otorgada la licencia
    interesada. El comienzo de cualquier obra o uso al amparo
    de esta requerirá, en todo caso, comunicación previa al municipio
    con al menos diez dias de antelación.

  • #63431
    Profile photo of Anonymous
    Anonymous
    Participant

    I would just like to say that all my posts concern costa del sol, as this is the area we bought in.
    I would never venture advice for outside this area.
    I constantly refer to the problems with the Marbella Town Hall specifically.

    This particular thread started with Ali C.’s posting – who happens to not only having bought in the Marbella area, but in a specific area (Elviria Sur) that was designated as green belt etc. in the Junta’s Plan of 1986.
    Ali C started this thread on the forum asking for help and info. from anyone who could offer help. Like most people.

    If she wanted purely legal advice, she could have spent her time telephoning lawyers.

    Having bought myself in this exact same area, having come ‘unstuck’ and having just been to court with my case, I have spent many months investigating the background of how all this particular place has gone wrong.
    So I felt ‘reasonably’ suited to offer my knowledge gained from my personal experience.

    Anyone who posts here know full well that people contributing and offering advice are Joe Public, and not lawyers. And advice should always be taken as such.

    As she is being bullied to complete by the developer. in her particular scenario, I stand by what I have previously written and would not advise her to part with any more money without an LFO in place.

    Consider all the investigations going on in this area by the Junta, and the cordoning-off by the police yesterday of yet another development very close by (despite having residents who now probably wish they had not completed without an LFO).
    I consequently also stand by my advice (for what it is worth) that the Administrative Silence rule here means nothing.

    Having now put Ali C in touch with my lawyer, I feel I have done my best to help this particular person.

    Barbara

  • #63433
    Profile photo of Anonymous
    Anonymous
    Participant

    So it’s all “done ‘n dusted!” 😉

  • #63435
    Profile photo of Anonymous
    Anonymous
    Participant

    Charlie, could you tell us what new development has just been closed off by the police?

  • #63437
    Profile photo of katy
    katy
    Spectator

    Hacienda Las Chapas in the area around the don carlos hotel (see post on this topic from me) people who have bought have already had a community meeting and some have furnished thier apartments. The whole complex has been sealed off with police tape and there are official notices on the (locked)gates. The security guard and the person working in the office were ordered off site.

  • #63903
    Profile photo of Anonymous
    Anonymous
    Participant

    Anyone interested in forming a class action against developers at La Reserva to retrieve deposit monies, please call me(steve-07957573822) to discuss. I know some buyers are completing and probably using the developers mortgage product but i think this is definitely the wrong way to go under the circumstances. With no Habitational Licences issued, it is far too risky. I’m sure a class action case against the developers would be the strongest case in court. But this has to be put together fairly quickly!

  • #63703
    Profile photo of Anonymous
    Anonymous
    Participant

    Anyone interested in forming a class action against developers at La Reserva to retrieve deposit monies, please call me(steve-07957573822) to discuss. I know some buyers are completing and probably using the developers mortgage product but i think this is definitely the wrong way to go under the circumstances. With no Habitational Licences issued, it is far too risky. I’m sure a class action case against the developers would be the strongest case in court. But this has to be put together fairly quickly!

  • #63922
    Profile photo of Anonymous
    Anonymous
    Participant

    Paying the fees to cancel the developer’s mortgage on completion is ANOTHER illegal clause in the La Reserva contracts. 😈 😈

  • #63722
    Profile photo of Anonymous
    Anonymous
    Participant

    Paying the fees to cancel the developer’s mortgage on completion is ANOTHER illegal clause in the La Reserva contracts. 😈 😈

  • #63936
    Profile photo of Anonymous
    Anonymous
    Participant

    Hello all,

    Just thought I would add my own experience to the cauldron of advice and contraversy. Having read one of Mark’s posts and seeing he prefer we dont name companies etc, I can give the full names if you PM me.

    I partnered up with the developer of Los Fl······s and we built 94 semidetached villas in Riveirra del Sol.

    Now I am probably going to get roasted alive for saying this but we advised people to move in prior to the Licence of first occupation (LFO). We only had one Spanish couple refuse our advice., but they bought the property as a off plan resale a few weeks before the licence was granted.

    The reasons as follows:

    1. Our development in Rivierra fell under Mijas town halls jurisdiction
    2. The townhall was heavilly overloaded with petitions from licences from other newly built urbanisations
    3. We were told that it would be between 8 to 10 months for the licence to granted.
    4. Some of our clients were residencial and needed to move in right away.

    For the record, our licences were in order, we never contravened the permissions we were given and we built a very pretty community that is functioning well and is about 65% occupancy year round. So we knew we would have no problems getting the licence, only that it would be a long wait.

    We had 30 or so residents move in between May and July 2005 and about another 15 up until the point where our licence came. Our licence was finally granted in January 2006.

    The builders supply was pushed to the absolute limit during that period and we had some fairly big problems with the electric on one of the streets, where the phase kept on blowing every time it rained. It was a real nightmare, especially as my colleague and I would be the ones called to try and sort it out over the weekends.

    Nothing we did seemed to hurry the process of getting the LFO. We were in fact stuck until the powers that be decided it was time to send one of their chaps to check. I had never heard of the rule of “Admin.. Silence” during this period either from my colleague or our lawyer though.

    Anyway, in this particular example no one got their fingers burnt (apart from me nearly cooking myself one rather wet Saturaday afternoon when the phase had blown again), all contracts were honoured and we now have 94 happy owners.

    I think the difference is that the Promoter was Belgian and had a very good reputation back in Brussels, we used a good honest lawyer who we still recommend to our clients (unholy as that sounds, but we do inform all of our clients that impartiality is a good option, however most meet Luis and feel happy to trust him) an excellent builder called BS::::s whom we paid the full tendering price to ensure that there was no further negotiation during the snagging phase during the first year of occupancy.

    So that’s my 2 cents to this discussion. Buyer beware always, but at the same time the coast is not all full of crooks, and I hope that when the market correction comes the dregs will finally be washed out of the Costa, so that good companies can get back to selling and building house professionally. I think that in the next 5 years Marbella will become one of the most regulated and safest places in Spain to buy a property in light of the clamp down of the Malaya operations.

  • #63736
    Profile photo of Anonymous
    Anonymous
    Participant

    Hello all,

    Just thought I would add my own experience to the cauldron of advice and contraversy. Having read one of Mark’s posts and seeing he prefer we dont name companies etc, I can give the full names if you PM me.

    I partnered up with the developer of Los Fl······s and we built 94 semidetached villas in Riveirra del Sol.

    Now I am probably going to get roasted alive for saying this but we advised people to move in prior to the Licence of first occupation (LFO). We only had one Spanish couple refuse our advice., but they bought the property as a off plan resale a few weeks before the licence was granted.

    The reasons as follows:

    1. Our development in Rivierra fell under Mijas town halls jurisdiction
    2. The townhall was heavilly overloaded with petitions from licences from other newly built urbanisations
    3. We were told that it would be between 8 to 10 months for the licence to granted.
    4. Some of our clients were residencial and needed to move in right away.

    For the record, our licences were in order, we never contravened the permissions we were given and we built a very pretty community that is functioning well and is about 65% occupancy year round. So we knew we would have no problems getting the licence, only that it would be a long wait.

    We had 30 or so residents move in between May and July 2005 and about another 15 up until the point where our licence came. Our licence was finally granted in January 2006.

    The builders supply was pushed to the absolute limit during that period and we had some fairly big problems with the electric on one of the streets, where the phase kept on blowing every time it rained. It was a real nightmare, especially as my colleague and I would be the ones called to try and sort it out over the weekends.

    Nothing we did seemed to hurry the process of getting the LFO. We were in fact stuck until the powers that be decided it was time to send one of their chaps to check. I had never heard of the rule of “Admin.. Silence” during this period either from my colleague or our lawyer though.

    Anyway, in this particular example no one got their fingers burnt (apart from me nearly cooking myself one rather wet Saturaday afternoon when the phase had blown again), all contracts were honoured and we now have 94 happy owners.

    I think the difference is that the Promoter was Belgian and had a very good reputation back in Brussels, we used a good honest lawyer who we still recommend to our clients (unholy as that sounds, but we do inform all of our clients that impartiality is a good option, however most meet Luis and feel happy to trust him) an excellent builder called BS::::s whom we paid the full tendering price to ensure that there was no further negotiation during the snagging phase during the first year of occupancy.

    So that’s my 2 cents to this discussion. Buyer beware always, but at the same time the coast is not all full of crooks, and I hope that when the market correction comes the dregs will finally be washed out of the Costa, so that good companies can get back to selling and building house professionally. I think that in the next 5 years Marbella will become one of the most regulated and safest places in Spain to buy a property in light of the clamp down of the Malaya operations.

  • #68219
    Profile photo of Anonymous
    Anonymous
    Participant

    @steventhelwell wrote:

    Anyone interested in forming a class action against developers at La Reserva to retrieve deposit monies, please call me(steve-07957573822) to discuss. I know some buyers are completing and probably using the developers mortgage product but i think this is definitely the wrong way to go under the circumstances. With no Habitational Licences issued, it is far too risky. I’m sure a class action case against the developers would be the strongest case in court. But this has to be put together fairly quickly!

    Steve I would be delighted at anytime to join a class action against this lot
    since they have a deposit of mine on an apartment thats supposed to have a 22 SQm garden thats not there and the dreadful attitude of this company,they deserve what they get. Tel 01803 606064 Jim Allen

  • #68034
    Profile photo of Anonymous
    Anonymous
    Participant

    @steventhelwell wrote:

    Anyone interested in forming a class action against developers at La Reserva to retrieve deposit monies, please call me(steve-07957573822) to discuss. I know some buyers are completing and probably using the developers mortgage product but i think this is definitely the wrong way to go under the circumstances. With no Habitational Licences issued, it is far too risky. I’m sure a class action case against the developers would be the strongest case in court. But this has to be put together fairly quickly!

    Steve I would be delighted at anytime to join a class action against this lot
    since they have a deposit of mine on an apartment thats supposed to have a 22 SQm garden thats not there and the dreadful attitude of this company,they deserve what they get. Tel 01803 606064 Jim Allen

  • #68221
    Profile photo of Anonymous
    Anonymous
    Participant

    Hi Jim – I have sent you a PM

You must be logged in to reply to this topic.