Neighbour's extension(10 Posts)
I am an expat and would like some advice/ opinions on this issue.
We live in a semi detached after years of renting I finally bought this 2 years back. House is basic haven't done much work left it for now until we save up.
Our neighbour pretty much told us on day we moved they are extending. We have a wall we share. We don't mind as long as regulations are followed and after reading agreement we signed party wall. They got work started and one Monday morning 5 mins before I leave the door they told me they are removing the fence. I was unaware of this and had no understanding of why we they have a garage and side entrance. I asked him if he can put a temp barrier for health and safety. If no fence builders can see my dining and lounge as we have open plan. I have seen other neighbours have a barrier erected between adjoining houses when such work was ongoing. Eventually I am seeing builders coming to my side in and out without telling us exactly the plan and how many days this will be ongoing. I could see them stand on patio etc taking measurements. He hadn't even covered the patio with anything to protect it from damage. This morning I sent out a mail stating, put fence or a temp barrier for health and safety, let us know the timeline and what to expect in terms of builders moving around. They also left the old fence in my plants and open nails around. I have a 6 yr old and was worried. Neighbour came accused me of being unfriendly and has had a big show down. Aibu? All I did was email what I wanted and was taken by surprise someone could step onto my side of garden. We only know them for 2 years and generally been civil until today . Sorry for long post my husband works 8-8 and I have no one to speak to
I can understand why you are miffed but that doesn't sound the friendliest of messages.
You have to live next door to them for a long time. Chucking in a few pleases and thank yous might have gone a long way.
Quite right - very important to speak up now. Someone will come with wise words and advice for you.
Thanks for the quick response. The issue with being polite was he caught me on Monday 5 mins before I was going to do school drop and head to work. I wasn't even sure what to expect. All I asked for is can you put some sort of covers on patio so it's not damage or gets cement spillage and I rushed off. Then yesterday on camera we saw guys with cigarette butts walking in and out and sort of messed up patio. I work from 9-5 and email was the best way to sort of put my thoughts. Last evening after bedtime I went out and saw a big gap dug in place where my fence was and I was worried as sometimes my son runs off to garden. I hadn't anticipated my whole patio will be used up. I learnt my lesson next time ask more questions. A temp barrier even if on my patio meant they could carry on on their work and I could still leave my boy in the garden. He now is saying that he has my agreement on video and he can take that to solicitor
Sorry I am writing so my things as it comes to my mind. He hadn't put any covers only a thin plastic sheet on my patio that too Monday evening. I could see on video when he did that. I was genuinely concerned about patio getting broken. Today he is accusing me I am responsible if quality of the wall is bad as I am pressuring him to get it done soon. All I ask is for a barrier and my own backyard or a timeline when this access is needed for them. We could agree on them working when we are away till 5 and then clear up and go but apparently that is not how these things work.
Take lots of pictures in case of damage. I wouldn't allow access at all if he wants to be an arse about it. He has no rights to take over your garden to do his extension.
Friendly or not, you do need to set out your (in my opinion, reasonable) expectations and keep on at them to ensure they stick to them. In my experience, builders and tradesmen generally are often very careless and disrespectful of properties, especially the properties of people who aren’t paying the bills. Don’t let them treat you like dirt, either the builders or your neighbours.
You should know that British people like everything to be coated in a very thick layer of politeness and manners. You must apologise for even breathing, but then go on and politely make your points, repeatedly if necessary. I fear you are in for a difficult time because they have your agreement to do the work and often builders and their clients rely on the British tendency to timidity and avoiding confrontation to do just what they like.
Thanks all! I am making notes of everything and taking pictures and videos. This morning when I opened the curtain at 7 am i was shocked to see one guy was stood smoking outside on my patio and I had to close curtain as I felt violated and turn lights on.
I will put it expectations in writing that I don't consent to having people here unless a temporary barrier has been erected and maybe we can agree on timings when they can do their work.
Party wall says 'The Building Owner must provide temporary protection for adjacent buildings and property where necessary. The Building Owner is responsible for making good any damage caused by the works or must make payment in lieu of making good if the Adjoining Owner requests it.'
So neighbourly thing to do is to put a barrier and stick to agreed terms.
Unfortunately I have a heavy indian accent which may come across as not being polite but I try and speak in slow neutral manner. I have no intention to stop their work as I do know they have grown up boys and need extra space as long as they can be amicable. I don't know why I am feeling super guilty as he came and had a showdown. That man is constantly around which ever side of house I come out of and accused me of being un-neighbourly and everything should be verbal agreement etc etc. I feel intimidated. I am wfh today as have an appointment later this evening.
I would call and get advice from a party wall surveyor, it’s great to be neighborly but not when they take the piss. They’ve saved themselves a heap of money by you signing the party wall agreement, you should have appointed a surveyor at this joint and they would have to have paid the costs
Here's the who should do what and when in England, just in case you've only got part of the rules and regulations pertaining to the agreement you signed.
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