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Loft conversion/3rd party walls/insurance??

(2 Posts)
fantalemon Fri 10-May-13 12:26:44


I appreciate this is somewhat of a hypothetical/technical issue but if anyone does have any experience/advice it would be very appreciated!

Bit of background, we live in a Victorian mid terrace. We had our loft converted last year using a fairly large specialist firm to do it. Our neighbour is now proposing to convert their loft but doing all the building work themselves.

At the time when we were about to start work on ours, the builder said there was a risk, because of the way the houses were built etc, that the supporting steel rod (?) could accidentally go through into next door's loft. In the end, this did not happen but the company we used issued a letter of guarantee that if this did happen, they were fully insured etc and would remedy any damage.

Now, my concern is that when next door carry out their conversion (for which they also need to insert a steel rod) it might cause damage to our property. Ordinarily, I wouldn't be too concerned as I would just claim against their builder (I assume). But what happens when they are doing the work themselves - do I need a firm guarantee that their home insurance would cover any damage?

I have rung our insurance company to ask what would happen in this situation but they said they couldn't advice unless and until we actually made a claim.

Our neighbour has asked us to sign the 3rd party wall agreement. I don't want to be a pain and hold up their work but is there anything more I could be doing to protect us?

Thank you in advance!

wonkylegs Fri 10-May-13 14:25:18

It's not called the 3rd party wall agreement, it's just a party wall agreement and it's here to protect you in this type of works.
If you go on here you can download a simply worded guide from this page.
I would consider appointing a party wall surveyor if they are doing the works themselves so that you have a impartial professional involved in the process. I rarely advise this but I think it would seem sensible in this case.

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