I'm going to re-post as it might have got lost in a thread...


I just want to say what a brilliant forum this is, I find it so helpful (especially as a reasonable newbie to the field).

I am starting the CPO process for the following property that has been empty for 10 years (it is a 3 storey mid terrace GF vacant commercial with empty 3 bed residential flat upstairs with a separate entrance from the GF). There has been a family dispute and the relationship between the brothers has broken down. Mediation has failed.  

We can definitely demonstrate housing need. I have a few questions:

1. The ownership is split between three people (a married couple and one of their brothers). The brother I met onsite yesterday states he has no documentation and that he actually owns 50%, and he thinks it is unlikely that he can find any paperwork. I advised him to contact the solicitor who registered the sale and find any paperwork/deeds. Q1: If a sale goes through after a CPO we would need know what amount to pay each party. Does anyone have any advice on how to pay interested parties in this kind of situation? I will of course also seek advice from our internal solicitor.

2. The commercial unit is under the same ownership.In this case the planning department do not have the upstairs flat recorded as residential (however Council Tax do) Planning said it would not be an issue converting the use to residential due to permitted development. Q2: When doing the CPO is there any issue for using the housing need argument when there it is a mixed use Commercial and Residential property? 

3. The brother I met with yesterday asked if he can buy the whole property back to renovate and rent out if the CPO was successful. Q3: Has anyone come across anything similar? I would have concerns that it would be seen as bias towards one of the brothers.

4. With regards to the home loss payment. The front of the property is in an OK condition with some refuse at the rear. If it was enough to serve a S.215 the compliant brother may just comply with the removal of the refuse. I served a Housing Act 2004 Notice of Entry for HHSRS, however there was no slipped tiles etc and was secure, so not sure an appeal would hold up for a suspended/improvement notice.  Q4: Any tips?

Thanks in advance for any help given.