Restrictive covenants are binding conditions that are written into a property’s deeds and/or contract by a seller to determine what a homeowner can or cannot do with their house or land under particular circumstances. They are applicable to all future purchasers of the property and not just the original purchaser and are generally designed to uphold certain standards for all residents.
Housing developers and property management companies will therefore often add restrictive covenants to a Transfer Deed in order to prevent owners from undertaking work or other practices which could impact negatively on a neighbourhood or undermine a desired level of ‘uniformity’ and/or maintenance. If you breach a restrictive covenant then you could be forced to undo any offending work (such as having to pull down an extension), pay a fee or even face legal action.
The following restrictive covenants formed part of our Phase 1/2 Transfer Deeds:
- Not to use the Property or any part for any purpose other than as or incidental to residential dwelling units and not to use or occupy the Property for any trade or business;
- During the first 5 years following the date of this Transfer not to construct or carry out any external alteration to any building or other structure whatsoever whether temporary or permanent on the Property without the prior consent of the Transferor and to pay the Transferor’s reasonable fees and in the event of such consent being granted not to carry out such work except in accordance with the plans elevations sections specifications and detailed drawings previously approved in writing by the Transferor provided that no such consent shall be required for the initial development of the Property in accordance with the Planning Consent;
- To obtain any planning consent required for any alterations or extensions to any building or structure in accordance with the Planning Permission;
- Not to construct any Boundary Structures or other structures nor allow any hedge to grow on the Property between any building on the Property and the Estate Roads other than Boundary Structures or hedges constructed and or planted by the Transferor (which the Transferee may from time to time replace);
- Not to cut down damage neglect or remove any existing tree or hedge on the Property or any other plant where to do so would be in breach of the requirements of the Public Authority;
- Not to use the Property or permit the same to be used for any illegal or immoral purpose or do or permit to be done anything which may be or become a nuisance or annoyance or cause damage to the Transferor or to the owners tenants or occupiers of any adjoining or neighbouring property on the Estate or otherwise;
- Not to construct or exhibit on the Property any hoarding structure notice board or sign of any kind for advertising or other purpose except that after the Transferor’s sales office on the Estate has permanently closed the Transferee may erect one notice or sign per Unit not exceeding one half square metre advertising the Unit for sale or to let;
- Not to keep or feed on the Property any animals other than normal household domestic pets not used for breeding purposes;
- Not to park any commercial vehicle caravan mobile home or boat on the Property between any building on the Property and the Estate Roads;
- Not to park on or obstruct the Estate Roads or Shared Accessway;
- Not to erect or place on the Property any aerial or satellite dish on any elevations fronting a public highway (which includes public paths);
- Not to cultivate construct or place any structure or other thing on any service strip (if any) or on any visibility splay except in accordance with the proper requirements of the Service Supplier;
- Not to construct place or permit upon under or over the easement strip (if any) shown on the Plan or on or within 3 metres of the Estate Sewers or any part of them any building Boundary Structure or other structure erection or works of any kind whatsoever whether permanent or temporary or any trees deep rooting plants or large shrubs except in accordance with the proper requirements of the Service Supplier;
- Not to transfer or part with the possession or occupation of any part of a single Unit comprised in the Property as distinct from the whole of the unit but only to assign transfer or part with the possession thereof as a whole;
- Not to dispose of the freehold interest in the Property or any part of it or grant a lease in excess of 7 years at no more than a nominal ground rent unless the disponee enters into (a) the Deed of Covenant with the Management Company and delivers the completed Deed of Covenant to the Management Company and
(b) a deed of covenant with the Transferor to observe and perform the covenants set out at Clause 12.6 of this Transfer in a form acceptable to the Transferor (acting reasonably) and delivers the completed deed of covenant to the Transferor;
- Not to do upon the Property or the Estate any act or thing which may impede (a) the adoption or the vesting in the Public Authority or Service Supplier of the Estate Roads or Estate Sewers or Service Apparatus which is or shall be intended to be so adopted or vested or (b) may result in loss or damage to or interference with any Estate Road Estate Sewer or Service Apparatus or street lighting within the Property (whether attached to buildings or within wall cavities gardens or open spaces of the Property which may be or become maintainable at the public expense or which is used jointly with the Transferor or with the owners or occupiers of the remainder of the Estate or any adjoining or neighbouring land (c) which may contaminate or pollute any Service Apparatus including without limitation any water recycling system forming part of the Property or the Estate;
- Not to move alter or interfere with the water meter which serves the Property;
- For a period of 5 years from the date hereof not to cut down lop to top any of the timber or other trees hedgerows or shrubs on the Property without the consent in writing of the Transferor which if granted may be subject to such conditions as the Transferor may think fit but which shall not be unreasonably withheld in the case of cutting down lopping or topping required by virtue of any effective notice order or direction from the local highway or other competent authority.