Must they pay to be legal?

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HOMEOWNERS: The boundaries have been changed and we are told that the properties are now legal. Photo: Shutterstock


QUESTION:

We are a group of homeowners caught up in the “illegal” housing problem. The boundaries have been changed and we are told that the properties are now legal. However, our Town Hall are asking the homeowners to pay fees that the developers should have paid but didn’t when we purchased our houses. The charges include things like architects’ fees and subdivision costs. My question is: are we the homeowners liable for these costs when we have already paid the full price for our properties? Also, is there a time limit on these debts after which they become null and void? We are approaching 15 years since purchasing our houses.

M.H. (by e-mail)

ANSWER:

In general, all expenses involved in making “illegal” houses into “legal” houses are charged to the homeowners even though it seems unfair. Also, it is true that many types of debt in Spain expire after 15 years, but not in this case. We are supposing that the developers and builders of your homes are no longer in business so they cannot be sued for any unpaid charges.

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