A Lessees guide to Licence for Alterations

Please take a moment to read through the following important information that is designed to assist you with your application for a Licence to Alter.

What is a Licence to Alter?

The lease that governs your property along with all the others that form Caledonian Residents Management Ltd prohibits you from carrying out works to your property without first gaining consent from the Freeholder (Copartnership Developments Limited).

The granting of consent is in the form of a Licence to Alter, an official document that is issued by the Freeholder to you.

The reason the procedure of Licences exists is to protect you and your fellow lessees from alterations to a flat that may cause damage or disturbances to other adjacent flats or the building as a whole.

Failing to comply with the terms of the Lease by not first being granted a Licence before commencing works renders you liable to legal action and the potential for you to be compelled to restore the building to its original status at your own expense..

Do all works require a Licence?
Not all works require a Licence especially if they are thought to be of only a minor nature. Examples of works that do not normally require a licence are listed below:

  • Internal redecorating.
  • Laying new carpets (please contact us regarding hard flooring).
  • Erecting shelves or wardrobes
  • Changing internal doors

If you are in any way unsure as to whether your proposed works require a Licence, please contact the building manager, in the first instance, and in consultation with the Board of Directors, advise you as to whether or not a License is required.

How do I apply for a Licence?

Caledonian Residents Management Ltd is the management company responsible for administering the Licences on behalf of the Freeholder.

Once you have established that your proposed works require a Licence you will need to apply to Caledonian Residents Management Limited with the following information:

  • Professionally compiled plan and section drawings, to scale, showing the existing and proposed layout.
  • A professionally compiled written specification of the works to be undertaken.
  • A report from a Chartered Building Surveyor / Architect or Structural Engineer stating that the proposed works are structurally sound.
  • Details of your proposed contractor(s) and professional team and any sub contractors they may be proposing to employ.
  • A Health & Safety statement from your proposed contractor(s).
  • A copy of your contractor(s) Public Liability Insurance, for the value of 5,000,000 and employers Liability insurance for the value of 1,000,000 covering themselves and sub-contractorsprofessional team.
  • Your proposed timetable for the works.
  • Copies of planning permissions and Building Regulations approval.

How much does it cost to apply?

A minimum charge will be payable upon application to Caledonian Residents Management. The minumum charge will be 350 to cover administrative cost and time required to review and compile the documentation for filing with the Freeholder and subsequent monitoring of the works. Depending upon the complexity of the works involved this charge may be increased. Please note that the minimum fee is payable whether or not the application proceeds to completion.

How long does the process take?

Once we have received all the required paperwork and fees we will consider your application as quickly as possible. The time it takes to respond depends on how complex the proposed works are.

Once we have confirmed that a license is required we will pass on all the details to the Freeholders surveyor so an appointment to inspect the property can be made.

A typical application takes about three weeks to process.

What happens next?

Once we have received all the required information, fees and the Surveyor has visited we will grant you formal permission to proceed with the works.

Can I start preparation works before I gain formal permission?

You can start minor works that fall outside the scope of the Licence e.g stripping wall paper, in preparation for works before the granting of formal consent.

However you must remember that the Licence may not be granted and you may be wasting both time and money in commencing.

We would strongly recommend that under no circumstance do you engage contractors until you have received formal approval to proceed.

Do not commence any structural work, remove any fixture and/or fittings until you have received the License to Alter from Caledonian Residents Management Ltd

What happens if I need to change the scope of the works once the project has commence on the site?

You must immediately inform us if any alterations to the scope of the works are required. Depending on the nature of the change the Surveyor may need to visit.

How are the works monitored?

Once the works are complete the Surveyor will again visit the property to ensure the works carried out are as described in the proposals and there is no damage caused to the property.

Assuming all is in order the License will then be issued and your damage deposit returned.

Is the Licence important?
Yes. It is a legal document and you must ensure you keep your licence carefully and it shows you have complied with the obligations of your lease. When you come to sell your property you may be asked to produce the license to prove the works were authorised and a Deed of Variation has been issued.

Where can I get further advice?

Please contact:

Caledonian Residents Management Limited

New Caledonian Wharf
6, Odessa Street
SE16 7TW

Tel: 020 7231 5906
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