Privacy settings

LGO logogram

Review your privacy settings

Required cookies

These cookies enable the website to function properly. You can only disable these by changing your browser preferences, but this will affect how the website performs.

View required cookies

Analytical cookies

Google Analytics cookies help us improve the performance of the website by understanding how visitors use the site.
We recommend you set these 'ON'.

View analytical cookies

In using Google Analytics, we do not collect or store personal information that could identify you (for example your name or address). We do not allow Google to use or share our analytics data. Google has developed a tool to help you opt out of Google Analytics cookies.

Royal Borough of Greenwich (17 018 462)

Category : Other Categories > Land

Decision : Closed after initial enquiries

Decision date : 26 Mar 2018

The Ombudsman's final decision:

Summary: Mrs X complained about the Council over-valuing some land which she wished to buy from it in 2015. The Ombudsman should not exercise his discretion to investigate this complaint. This is because the Council gave its valuation of the land in 2015 and there is no obligation for it to sell at a lower value or sell the land at all.

The complaint

  1. The complainant, whom I shall call Mrs X, complains about the Council’s valuation of a piece of land which she wishes to buy as unreasonable. She says the Council should negotiate a lower price with her based on a more realistic valuation.

Back to top

The Ombudsman’s role and powers

  1. We cannot investigate late complaints unless we decide there are good reasons. Late complaints are when someone takes more than 12 months to complain to us about something a council has done. (Local Government Act 1974, sections 26B and 34D, as amended)

Back to top

How I considered this complaint

  1. I have considered all the information which Mrs X submitted with her complaint and she has commented on the draft decision.

Back to top

What I found

  1. Mrs X’s property borders with an area of land to which the Council has established ownership. In 2014, she made an offer to buy the plot so that she could extend her property and build a new house on it. In August 2015, the Council gave her a valuation price of £150,000 for the plot, without a guarantee of planning permission.
  2. Mrs X employed a surveyor and in early 2016 offered the Council £50,000 for the plot which she considers realistic. The Council rejected her offer telling her that the plot was worth its valuation and the basis used was the value of other plots sold previously. The Council has continued to maintain its valuation and says it will not sell at a loss to the public purse.
  3. Mrs X complained to the Ombudsman in February 2018, which is outside the normal twelve-month period. The Ombudsman will not exercise discretion to investigate this complaint because it is not our role to provide an independent valuation of land. It is several years since the original valuation and this may have changed since that time. The Council is not obliged to sell land to Mrs X even if she offers the valuation price; that is a matter for the Council to decide.

Back to top

Final decision

  1. The Ombudsman should not exercise his discretion to investigate this complaint. This is because the Council gave its valuation of the land in 2015 and there is no obligation for it to sell at a lower value or sell the land at all.

Investigator’s decision on behalf of the Ombudsman

Back to top

Investigator's decision on behalf of the Ombudsman

Print this page