Agricultural ties, otherwise known as agricultural occupancy conditions, have been applied to properties since 1948 and are essentially a planning condition used to restrict occupancy of the property. Because the tie restricts who can live in the property, they have a serious impact on their market value.
Why lift the agricultural tie?
You may be wondering if it is worth going through the process to remove the agricultural tie. Here are some of the ways removing the tie will benefit you:
- Agricultural ties can reduce the value of a property by about 40%, so removing the tie and add a significant amount of value to your property.
- Its difficult to get a mortgage with an agricultural tie on the property, therefore by removing the tie you will have access to a wider range of mortgage lenders.
- There will be no restrictions on occupancy of the property and no possibility of the restriction be re-added in the future.
- Planning permission will be easier to obtain. Properties subject to the agricultural tie need to show that any extensions will increase the value of the property. Without the tie any planning permission request is treated like any other residential request by the Council.
How to lift the tie
There are two options for lifting and agricultural tie:
The marketing method
This method involves offering the property on the open market and seeing is any viable offers are made. The property needs to be on the market for a period specified by the Local Planning Authority, an they will carry out a needs assessment to review the availability of affordable housing in the local area.
At the end of the specified period there needs to be no viable offers, and no local need for affordable housing. An application will then need to be made to the Local Planning Authority to remove the tie.
Original planning permission was not implemented
The second method for removing the agricultural tie is to show that the original planning permission was not implemented. This method involves a more complex legal argument; however, the benefit is that it is quicker as it removes the need for listing the property on the open market. For this method particularly it is important to seek specialist legal advise to guide you through the process and advise you on which option is most suited to your situation.