Two thirds of tenants in Carlisle block living in wrong properties

A man in Carlisle has been living in the his neighbour’s flat for six years completely unbeknownst to both.

When he came to sell the flat, Chris Meyer discovered that while he thought he’d bought one property, it turned out he owned an entirely separate flat.

After contacting his neighbours, it turned out ten out of the fifteen in the block had also been in the wrong properties or renting them out for years.

Speaking to the Carlisle News & Star, Mr Meyer said: “Basically, I live in number 8 and thought I had bought number 8.

“But Land Registry documents show that I actually own Number 9. The man who thought he’d bought Number 7 actually owns my flat. It’s the same for ten of the 15 flats.

“It’s a complete mess. Not surprisingly, my buyer pulled out.”

Just five flats in the building are unaffected. But lawyers have said none of the affected owners can sell their properties unless the Land Registry gains every owner’s agreement to rectify the problem.

However, some owners have rented out their property, and have not yet responded to written requests to address the issue. Burnetts, the Carlisle law firm that helped Mr Meyer purchase his flat, said it was his responsibility to check the documents related to the correct property.

Nick Gutteridge, a managing partner at Burnetts, said: “We are very clear that responsibility for checking the title report was with Mr Meyer.

“Although this is not a situation of our making, we have gone above and beyond in helping Mr Meyer to rectify the issue, including liaising with other property owners and their lenders.

“We have previously encouraged Mr Meyer to seek independent legal advice and do so again. In the meantime, we are willing to continue to help, if he wants us to do so.”

Today's Conveyancer