anyone live in a private road

  sunnystaines 07:36 09 Jun 2013

my moving house sags continues, place i am looking at is in a small private road, the builder refused to pay a fee to the council so it was never adopted.

the road is in good condition and only about ten years old. just wondering for the future do the residents club together and get insurance to cover repairs, at present no one has done anything. looking for advice.

  wiz-king 08:14 09 Jun 2013

I would look very closely at the deeds, there may be a covenant along with the usual 'alcohol must not be pervaded' that is the common one down here. You could find that the roadway outside is part of your property in which case you are liable for its upkeep. Also you need to look at the services, on older private roads water and drains can be the owners responsibility back to the main road although this is now becoming uncommon.

  sunnystaines 08:29 09 Jun 2013


thank you for the reply, nothing in deeds or convent rules about the upkeep of the road.

  Forum Editor 08:35 09 Jun 2013

You will not be able to get insurance cover against future road surface repairs, although you can insure against damage to signs, gates, fences, security equipment and street furniture.

Many private road occupiers band together to set up a fund that will be used to defray repair costs, although not all of them do. In essence, and unless there are other arrangements, you will be responsible for the upkeep of the section of road in front of your property, up to the centre of the road.

It can all get horribly complicated, and can lead to considerable expense, so you would do well to consult a solicitor before you go further into the purchase process.

  BRYNIT 08:36 09 Jun 2013

You might want to read Roads Unadopted

  Quickbeam 08:37 09 Jun 2013

"at present no one has done anything"

Which is why in 40 years or so you'll be living on a road with a frost ravaged broken surface, foot deep potholes and collapsed drains.

Every town has a few of them where one or more of the residents don't have the money to contribute or the will to care. Another half dozen won't pay if some of the others won't pay anything, leaving a small 50% that are eventually willing to pay for the repairs that all benefit from as long as they all agree to let the council adopt with the relevant increase in local rates.

But if one stubborn bugger won't agree to anything, it stays as is for another 20 years until someone else has the tenacity to try it all again, but by then you'll be the one with no money being a poor pensioner!

  BT 09:16 09 Jun 2013

Not Roads but Sewers in my case.

When I was buying the property the solicitor discovered that a main sewer runs directly under my garage and garden, from the road through to join up with the main sewer on the parallel road. He advised me to take an insurance against having to have major repairs digging up my property. It was a one off £100.

We also found out later that the street drains/sewers weren't adopted by the water company and we were liable for any repairs, but this has now been addressed by the new regulations and we are no longer liable. The strange thing is since the new regulations came into force we have had far fewer problems with blockages and having to have the drains cleared than we used to have.

  sunnystaines 09:32 09 Jun 2013


thank you for the link, read through it twice and saved a copy.

  bumpkin 11:50 09 Jun 2013


Quickbeam gives a fairly good guide as to what you can expect. How it is eventually resolved though will very much depend upon the attitudes of your neighbours at the time.

  Quickbeam 12:04 09 Jun 2013

That was the scenario of a friends experience. It took the death of the resident grumpy bugger for the road to get it's first major repairs for over 60 years.

New drains, foundations, road surface and pavements were paid for by the council, but at a price to be recouped in the rates.

It was so bad, two of the potholes were 16" deep, that you really did need a 4x4 to get to the shops!

  sunnystaines 12:43 09 Jun 2013

thanks for the advice the strange thing is the council provide street lights, sewers and water provided by utilities. I will try and push for council to adopt while its in good order if all goes well.

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