Areas of Law / Property

My mother’s neighbour built an extension on the back of his house ten years ago, with a window facing her garden. Her house is about to be sold. Will the buyers be able to block the window with a high fence, or does the neighbour have a right to light?

A room can acquire a “right to light” only after a period of 20 years, so the new owners of your mother’s house will probably be able to put up a fence blocking light from the extension if they wish. In any case a “right to light” doesn’t imply full daylight. It’s unlikely the extension is built right on the boundary, so in practical terms a fence of regulation height wouldn’t cut out all the light to the window. 

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