May 3, 2006 at 12:57 pm #51775
Once a developer has been given the Occupation Licence can they force completion on a buyer, even when the buyer is not satisfied with the property? In our case there will be snagging to finish, and the site hasn’t been landscaped yet, but we are being told that Completion will have to take place before these outstanding issues are sorted.
If the developer can force completion, can our lawyer legally withhold a retention? 🙁
May 3, 2006 at 7:23 pm #61968
As I understand it, after completion you have a certain amount of time to complete the snagging and report back to the developer, this should be stipulated in your contract. As for the landscaping, is your property part of a development, golf complex etc. If so perhaps that will be finished at a later date. Your solicitor should be your first point of call, can they not advise you?
May 3, 2006 at 7:33 pm #61969
The property is part of a development. My solicitor says I have to complete in full and then sue for damages if outstanding work isn’t completed, but I heard from other buyers that they believed you can apply a retention. I’m trying to find out the facts
May 3, 2006 at 8:09 pm #61970
This is definately a case for either Cesar Fernandes (Construction & Planning Lawyer) or Maria Luisa de Castro. They kindly help regularly on this forum I gather. If they are listening in I’m sure they will try to help.
May 3, 2006 at 10:36 pm #61971
I heard from other buyers that they believed you can apply a retention.
Any retention clause would have been in the contract too. It can be used as an alternative to the 1 year element of the defects insurance. It’s (usually) one or the other, but not both (unless you were very canny in your pre-purchase negotiations!)
May 4, 2006 at 9:01 am #61972
Yes, once the LFO has been granted you are compelled to complete. Notwithstanding your lawyer may apply a reasonable retention at completion If the flaws detected in the snagging haven’t been dealt with at the time of completion.
May 5, 2006 at 1:08 pm #61984
Contracts need to be comply. It doesn´t depend on Licences. Nothing to do.
Your case depends on:
1.- The nature of the non-compliances you obsere ( there are different classes according to Law)
2.- The letter of your contract ( what the clauses say)
3.- The observance/ not observance of the Consumers´ regulations.
You are not obligued to completion if you are not receiving what it was contracted. You can let the developers know that, before the date of the completion through a notharised letter.
May 5, 2006 at 3:15 pm #61985
Maria, elsewhere on this site it says that even statements made in advertising brochures about facilities on site can be assumed to form part of the contract.
Our developer has reduced the number of swimming pools on site, hasn’t landscaped it yet, hasn’t built the gym and indoor pool etc, but says that all this will be done after we complete. Somehow I doubt it, but I don’t want to be forced to complete and then have to sue them.
May 5, 2006 at 3:32 pm #61986
Publicity has been explicitly considered legally binding since February 2006 to developers in Andalucia. But I am sure I can find Jurisprudence basis (Court Decissions) dated before then in order to defend that publicity is always binding for the announcer.
Anyhow, for a more precise instruction about how to proceed, a careful reading of the contract and a a personal account of the facts become necessary.
Maria de Castro
May 5, 2006 at 4:28 pm #61988
María, If the contract states you ought to complete once the LFO has been granted you must and almost 100% of contracts do so. In fact working as a lawyer I’ve never come across a contract which doesn’t state it.
If you don’t set a date for completion or reject it without a justiafiable reason once the LFO has been granted by the Town Hall you’ll be clearly breaching the contract and be forced to face the penalties stipulated within which normally amount to a loss of the funds allocated to the purchase as set forth in the contracts clauses.
So I’m afraid your carefree remark that the LFO has nothing to do with being compelled to complete is mistaken.
Another matter being if there are significant flaws outstanding from the snagging carried out in which case you can buy time by means of requerimientos notariales until they are fixed etc or else practise retentions upon completion. And this is precisely what I had highlighted in my previous post so I don’t understand your remark.
May 5, 2006 at 7:32 pm #61989
In my situation i have completed on a property and have all the licences in place including the final one issued by town hall. Now i find that the builder has not provided the means for power to be supplied to the development and no water connection to the properties . As you say i was told that i had to complete when the final licence was issued , but am left with a property i cant yet use for lack of basic services. How do i proceed from here ? should my solicitor get involved again or what ?
Any advice would be appreciated
May 5, 2006 at 8:22 pm #61990
If the Licence of First Occupation has been granted then you should have water & electricity. If it was the Certificate of Final Works, then you should not have completed., until the LFO was granted. If this is the case , your lawyer has been negligent in allowing you to complete.
May 6, 2006 at 7:57 am #61992
I agree with Claire.
If they’ve been granted the LFO the development should have a regular (i.e. official) water, electricity, gas, telecommunications supply. There is no reason not to have it.
Your lawyer has been extremely negligent, he should’ve made absolutely sure you had said supplies hooked up before completion. He could had either refused to complete until those supplies were available (despite there being a LFO granted it is blatant that If the basic supplies are not offered you are entitled not to complete until they are available) or else your lawyer should’ve applied a hefty retention at completion until they are offered.
I personally would not complete despite the LFO until the basic and offcial supplies are there in place (be wary of the developer’s trick of “agua and luz de obras” which is not official).
It is indeed a strange case. Are you positively sure they’ve been granted a LFO ? Have you seen it yourself or is this your lawyer just promising it … ? It really strikes me as being very very odd indeed.
You ought to contact your lawyer at no extra charge (this is already included in the 1% you paid him) and make sure he fights for your rights arranging those supplies. If he shows lack of interest (because he isn’t being paid any extra fees for this) be pushy on him warning that you’ll take the case to his Bar Association that ought to shake him up.
May 6, 2006 at 12:59 pm #61994
Of course you are right an precisely, your statement is not different from mine.
IF THE CONTRACT states that the moment to complete is after the LFO and the snagging, you need to complete or, you will be consequently breaching the contract. At least, as you have said too, you find the builder has not complied and you notice that to him through a notharised letter.
But that is because of your contractual will, not becasue of the power of the License. So, a different thing can be agreed, and therefore when I intervene in the forum i prefer to not say a last word till I have seen what it has been agreed between the two parties in the contract.
With all my respect to your professional expertise and experience.
Maria de Castro
May 6, 2006 at 5:05 pm #61997
I agree. It’s not the LFO itself that compells you to complete, or any other Licence for that matter, it’s the contracts clauses by which you are binded. Granted.
My point was that 100% of contracts compell you to complete once the Town Hall grants said Licence of First Occupation hence my remark that once granted you were compelled to complete, providing the snagging, supplies etc were all ok at the time of completion as you already posted above.
We are saying the same thing as you’ve already pointed out. 😉
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