One landlord delivered some unfortunate news to tenants regarding their garden.
A Redditor living in Namur, Belgium, with his girlfriend detailed their ordeal in the subreddit r/belgium, questioning the legality of their landlord informing them he’d sold “half of the surface” of a garden on their rental property so that someone could build a house on the land.
“He doesn’t [seem] to know if this will change anything for the lease that we have signed. Is it legal?” the Redditor wrote.
“As you put it, it does sound fishy,” one commenter agreed. “… Seek legal advice with professionals.”
While the noise and pollution associated with construction are enough to give anyone a headache, there are other reasons why the reduction of green spaces is concerning.
According to the National Library of Medicine, gardening is good for mental and physical health. The presence of plants even improves air quality through the removal of toxins, dust, and microorganisms.
Gardens can also support the needs of vital pollinators like butterflies and bees while absorbing carbon dioxide (CO2), a heat-trapping gas that is linked to rising global temperatures, including extreme heat waves that negatively impact both the mind and body.
After further examination of the lease, the Redditor discovered that use of the garden was included in the cost of their rent, and he announced his intention to contact the Namur equivalent of Syndicat des Locataires, a union focused on the rights of tenants in Belgium.
Commenters on Reddit seemed to feel the initial poster’s pain, further affirming the decision to advocate for the garden.
“If this is part of your rental agreement, then I guess the new landlord has to deal with you for that part of land,” one person wrote.
“The buyer can’t just come in and take away the garden you rent,” said another.
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