Buying a listed building in Southampton - key things to know

The idea of owning a desirable listed building is an appealing one. The reality is, however, not for the faint-hearted. If you are intending to buy a listed building in Southampton - here’s what you need to consider.

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Listed house front door Southampton

First steps

First look into what classification of listed building the home you want to buy is. The grade will help describe what your obligations will be.

Grade I buildings of exceptional interest
Grade II* particularly important buildings of more than special interest
Grade II buildings that are of special interest, warranting every effort to preserve them

What restrictions will I need to be aware of?

Listed building restrictions are in place to preserve a property's architectural or historic interest. These restrictions prevent alterations that do not have the necessary consent (for example an extension) to the building.

Examples of what may be listed range from casement windows to gable-ended wings.

I want to make alterations

Planning permission and listed building consent from Southampton City Council for any external or internal alterations is needed by the owner of a listed property.

What do I do if the property has already been altered?

The liability for ensuring the appropriate consents are in place is passed to the buyer from the seller. Failing to obtain the correct planning consents for any alterations is considered an offence.

What will the purchaser need to do to maintain the property?

Owners of listed buildings in Southampton are required to keep the home in a good state of repair.

If you do not do so, the local council can take formal action, culminating in compulsory acquisition if you refuse to comply.

The repair work will often need to be undertaken in a period-specific manner, such as weatherboard cladding and cruck-framing.

Directory of listed properties in Southampton

There are more than half a million listed buildings across the country - around 369 of which are in Southampton City Council.

Listed buildings in and around Southampton include:

  • Ferry House, Canute Road, Southampton, City Of Southampton
  • Central Baptist Church And Ancillary Buildings To South, Devonshire Road, Southampton, City Of Southampton
  • 74-76 Bedford Place, Southampton, City Of Southampton
  • Church Of St Alban And Church Hall, Burgess Road, Swaythling, Southampton, City Of Southampton

Complete listings can be found on the Historic England website.

Gaynor Haliday, Legal researcher

About the author

Gaynor Haliday is an experienced legal researcher and published author. She has had numerous articles published in the press and is a legal industry commentator.

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