House extension: how to keep your neighbours happy

May 6, 2022 | Property News

Planning an extension for your home is an exciting time, but many people worry how their neighbours might react to the possibility of disruption caused by the building works. Here are five tips to reassure other residents about your future home renovation project.

Show your neighbours the plans

Many difficulties that arise with neighbours over building extensions stem from poor communication. Don’t surprise your neighbours on day one of the build, and instead try to show them the plans for the extension as soon as possible before any rumours begin to swirl.

It is a legal requirement to inform your neighbours on some construction work, such as when dealing with work around the boundaries of the two properties, but even when it is not legally required it is still the best plan of action.

Listen to feedback

The construction of your extension will have an impact on your neighbours, and whilst you should try and be mindful of their needs during planning it is always useful to get their input as well.

Your extension may impact the light coming into their garden, or the view from their windows, and so you may not be able to solve all their issues with your build, you should give them the opportunity to be heard and listen to their concerns.

Keep your neighbours informed throughout

As the build progresses, your neighbours will appreciate being kept informed so that they know if certain days in the coming weeks may be particularly noisy or when the builders might need to bring in heavy machinery and the road may become blocked.

It is impossible to keep everyone happy all the time, but it is relatively quick and simple to keep your neighbours in the loop with regular updates via WhatsApp or similar, and this should stop anyone being surprised on the day.

Keep construction to work hours

Building work can be quite loud, and while people will generally tolerate the disruption during the work day, they will be less understanding of the work continues late into the night or Sundays.

Building work is generally permissible between 8am and 6pm, Monday to Friday, and 8am to 1pm on a Saturday. There may be projects where it is critical that work needs to be carried out outside these times or on Sundays, but such situations should be avoided where possible and if it is critical then be sure to give your neighbours advanced notice.

Choose reliable and reputable builders

A good building company can help you throughout the process of building an extension from planning to completion, and they understand that disruption should be kept to a minimum where possible to maintain a good relationship with your neighbours.

The best building firms will help you create a design for your extension that gives you the most space whilst limiting impact on your neighbours, walk you through the process of obtaining the right planning permissions, and make sure the project complies with the right building rules and regulations.

Most importantly, they will construct a high quality extension, that looks great both inside and out and will also stand the test of time.

Most people understand that their neighbours might want to extend their property, and will tolerate some disruption just as they would expect from their neighbours if they decided to start a building project of their own. However, if they are being unreasonable at every step then just remember to keep your composure, remain polite, and see your project through.

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