There is a lot of misunderstanding surrounding Restrictive Covenants which are an integral part of the ‘rules’ for those living on the Island and which are designed to protect the look and feel/ambiance of the Island. The information provided here and expanded upon in the document link below aims to provided residents with some guidance – and in layman’s terms!
Note: I am not a lawyer and take no responsibility for the accuracy of the information set out here, or my interpretation of it. My aim is simply to highlight the importance of the Covenants and to remind residents of the possible implications if they ignore them and, if in doubt on any aspect(s), to suggest they seek appropriate legal advice beforehand.
The Enfield Island Village Trust, or indeeed any individual resident, is entitled to take enforcement action against anyone who breaches a Restrictive Covenant
By way of example, the most applied enforcement against FLAT residents, during my time as property manager, was the requirement to remove unsightly satellite dishes from flats! However, the use of a single COMMUNAL dish, if authorised and supplied/installed by the management company, was permitted.
Other examples of major/common breaches of covenants are considered to be:
- The erection of a conservatory and/or front porch.
- Replacing double glazing without retaining the style/look of the original windows.
- Replacing/converting garages into a room(s).
The 3 points above relate to paragraph/clause 9 of the attached document and is without doubt the most draconian of the covenants, and which causes the most anger amongst residents! However, the interpretation has been challenged/tested in the courts. A resident who erected a conservatory and porch was taken to court by the EIVT and ordered to remove both!
Also, if a resident breaches one or more covenants then they run the risk of not being issued with a Certificate of Conformity from the Trust – necessary for them to remortgage or sell their property!
For people living in houses the covenants form part of the deeds of each property and it is the responsibility of property owners to seek legal advice about Covenant issues.
Finally, please note that observance of covenants takes precedence over any planning permission you may receive from the council!
Document: Restrictive Covenants Extract