Enclosing of Terraces

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Parilla
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Enclosing of Terraces

Postby Parilla » Wed Apr 14, 2010 5:57 am

Question for David please, on this thorny subject.

At our last community meeting, a Spanish owner asked for permission to glass in his terrace - this despite being seemingly against Article 7 of the LPH, and definitely against our community rules. The request was refused by a simple majority.

Nevertheless he has gone ahead with the enclosure, justifying his actions by saying the type of construction used is called "glass curtaining", which does not constitute permanent enclosure. Whatever you call these, they have enclosed the terrace, and they alter the exterior appearance of the building.

Your book says the possibility of protest aginst this type of action exists, but does not say what that is - can you elaborate please ? Any suggestion of protest or complaint to our President is out of the question, as he and the offender are thick as thieves "best mates", and he is unlikely not to have known his mate was going ahead regardless.

Parilla

julian
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Re: Enclosing of Terraces

Postby julian » Wed Apr 14, 2010 7:17 am

glass curtaining is almost invisible..how about a bit of live and let live?

Parilla
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Re: Enclosing of Terraces

Postby Parilla » Wed Apr 14, 2010 12:34 pm

Not this glass curtaining, Julian. How about less anarchy, some democracy and compliance with the law - maybe this coast would climb out of the hole it has dug itself.

Paula
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Re: Enclosing of Terraces

Postby Paula » Wed Apr 14, 2010 2:44 pm

Whether or not the owner is "best mates" with the President, I would start the ball rolling by writing to The President and Administrators. Ask why it has been allowed when it was voted against at the AGM, and also contravenes your community by-laws. Ask on whose authority the work went ahead and what is in place to stop other owners from building whatever they wish.
Tell them you expect a written reply, then decide on your action once you get a reply.

El Cid
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Re: Enclosing of Terraces

Postby El Cid » Wed Apr 14, 2010 3:58 pm

Parilla wrote: Nevertheless he has gone ahead with the enclosure, justifying his actions by saying the type of construction used is called "glass curtaining", which does not constitute permanent enclosure.
Irrespective of what he says, or what the salesman told him and even irrespective of the community rules, the Town Hall planning department will have a view as to whether it constitutes an enclosure.

Either way planning permission will almost certainly be required.

Sid

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DavidSearl
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Re: Enclosing of Terraces

Postby DavidSearl » Thu Apr 15, 2010 4:05 pm

FROM DAVID SEARL

FOR PARILLA

1. A Community owner has enclosed his terrace, defying the AGM's denial of their approval for it.

2. The enclosure is "illegal" because it alters the appearance of the building and because it alters the basic charter of the Community. This is because that owner now has more square metres of enclosed area, and this should change his percentage "cuota" of the total and at the same time, the "cuotas" of every other owner should drop by a tiny percentage in compensation.

3. Your question is, how can you protest?

Unfortunately you will have to go to law if the President does not act and if the AGM denial is ignored. You will have to get a lawyer skilled in Community matters and he will present a charge to the Court that one owner has enclosed his terrace, infringing the law, in defiance of the Community, and that the Community itself has failed to act more forcefully in the matter. This will cost you a thousand euros, possibly more. However, you are almost certain to win the case and you will make sure that you seek your own legal costs as well. The court will order the enclosure removed and will order the Community and/or the owner to pay your legal costs. There are dozens of such cases on record and your chances of losing are tiny.

4. Take Paula's advice and send registered letters or Burofax to the President and to the Adminstrator. If they respond, save their answers as well as your copies for your lawyer to use.

5. I estimate that 80 per cent of all apartment terraces in Spain have been illegally enclosed. Only a few buildings are really strict about it. Keep in mind that no one will thank you for it, if it costs the Community members money.

Good luck with it, David Searl
You and the Law in Spain

Paula
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Re: Enclosing of Terraces

Postby Paula » Fri Apr 16, 2010 9:02 pm

DavidSearl wrote:FROM DAVID SEARL

2. The enclosure is "illegal" because it alters the appearance of the building and because it alters the basic charter of the Community. This is because that owner now has more square metres of enclosed area, and this should change his percentage "cuota" of the total and at the same time, the "cuotas" of every other owner should drop by a tiny percentage in compensation.
David out of interest why should it change cuotas if he has enclosed his terrace? Surely the plot size that his cuota is based on is exactly the same, just some of it now has glass around. Or am I misunderstanding how it is worked out.

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Re: Enclosing of Terraces

Postby Jool » Fri Apr 16, 2010 10:08 pm

Paula,

I think it is because this owner now has more enclosed space as opposed to open or semi open.....

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Re: Enclosing of Terraces

Postby Paula » Sat Apr 17, 2010 10:47 am

Hi Jool. That's what I don't understand. I thought cuotas were based on sq ft of enclosed and outside space which would include terraces etc. I'm assuming the owner had a covered terrace to enable glass curtains. In which case his "plot" size hasn't changed at all. As David said it is very common for people to do this, we have properties on an urbanization where people have built extra rooms on covered terraces, where just 3 walls turn a terrace into a room, roof already there, aswell as glass curtains on outside terraces/balconies. I didn't think that would have any bearing on their community cuota. Just interested to know should I wish to bang on about it at a future AGM :mrgreen:
Though also agree with David that little can be done about it if a President is unwilling to do anything.

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Retro P
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Re: Enclosing of Terraces

Postby Retro P » Sat Apr 17, 2010 8:23 pm

I own a town house in Nueva Andalucia on a row of eight identical ones, in the community there are four identical blocks.
Downstairs, lounge centrally located kitchen (mid section) upstairs very large bedroom with front balcony and a large 25 sq m terrace at the back where we hang our washing etc and sometimes sit with a glass or two.
At the bottom of our "plot" at the end of the lowest row of houses, is a house, the back of which, due to it's design can only be seen from the golf course, the joker who did this (enclosed the entire terrace) tried to get away with it but his neighbour simply took a photograph of it and posted it to the relevant office along with a copy of the community rules, he was made to rip it out and was fined, not sure but I think it was eight thousand, easy solution.
The planning authorities are now sh*t hot on planning infringements, this might be your best course of action. :)
Ah! the full english!!

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pigs-might-fly
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Re: Enclosing of Terraces

Postby pigs-might-fly » Sun Apr 18, 2010 2:45 pm

In our Urb, there is an open terrace which has been enclosed by a sort of conservatory.
Despite grumbles, the Administrators have not taken formal action: is it now too late after four years?
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