Can receivers clean up and sell the unsightly house next door?

Property Clinic: The house has a large waste dump in the back garden among other issues

We live next door to a rented house. Recently the tenants have moved out and receivers have been appointed to the property. The house has many issues including a large waste dump in the back garden, a dodgy roof (which allows water to pool in our shared central valley after heavy rain) and while the house was built 20 years ago, I am told it had no planning permission.

What are the chances that the house can be cleaned up and sold? Do receivers have to ensure these things are managed?

I hear your frustration in having to reside next to a house which has not been maintained.

It is not pleasant to be living next to a property which has a waste dump and an untidy rear garden. This can create a perfect environment for vermin and foul odours.


The build-up of water in the shared roof valley appears as a result of the lack of maintenance. The roof may require repairs (unblocking gutters and gullies etc). It is essential that the water issue in the shared roof valley be addressed as there is a potential for water ingress to affect your property if the matter goes unattended.

All houses require planning permission unless they were constructed prior to the introduction of the Local Government, Planning and Development Regulation Act 1963. In any event, you can make inquiries with the local county council to establish whether or not the house was granted planning permission. If they were to put the property up for sale then the vendor would have to ensure that it is in compliance with planning and development regulations.

One positive outcome for you is that the property has now been vacated. The receiver’s remit is to recover as much value from the property for its rightful owner, possibly a lending institution. If the receiver is to achieve this then they will have to put the dwelling up for sale on the open market.

Potential purchasers

It is normal and good practice to present a property for sale in as good a condition as possible to attract potential purchasers. You are probably in luck as the receiver will most likely undertake a clean-out of the property and have it refreshed and possibly painted etc.

However, in the meantime you should make discreet inquiries to identify the firm of receivers, and at a later date the estate agent so that you can bring your concerns to their attention.

It is in the receiver's interest to listen and to take proactive measures to ensure that the property is cleaned up and presented in good condition. – Andrew O'Gorman

Andrew O'Gorman is a chartered building surveyor and member of the Society of Chartered Surveyors Ireland,