At Devereux & Co we have developed a close relationship with several clients who have carried out numerous property developments over the years.
The first phase of their operation is acquiring the site that they will later develop. This sometimes involves assembling the whole site by way of separate purchases from several owners. The site may be an existing building which is converted into flats or it may have redundant buildings on it which are to be demolished so that a housing development may take place on cleared ground.
In either case, the sale documentation has to be appropriate; for example, Leases will need to be prepared for the onward sale of flats where the building has been constructed as or converted to flats. Separate freehold titles may need to be created if there are to be freehold plot sales for houses. In either case account must be had of the unique physical characteristics of the development and its infrastructure. For example the Deeds must deal with shared access and parking, shared use of drains and other services, maintenance and use of communal areas.
Development conveyancing requires a detailed knowledge of planning and environmental law, building regulations, builders warranties (e.g. NHBC) and the security requirements of the funding institution, normally a bank, providing the finance for the development.
Property developments are complex affairs and an important aspect of delivering the job on time is maintaining good working relationships with the other professionals who are likely to be involved.