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Old 12-09-2007, 10:05 AM   #1
kip
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Loft conversion - doing it ourselves?


HI,

I am in the planing process of a loft conversion and am planning to undertake it myself with 3 family members who have been in the game for 30 years each but arent members of any building federation.

The council are happy with the plans for the loft.

However im being opposed by my neighbours that i need to use builders that are a) members of builders federtion and b) have the nesecary insurance.

This will no doubt add 10-15k to my bill!

Does anyone know if it is within my neighbours legal right to insist that i use builders who are members of trade federationa and also insured? Do I just need to make myself liable for damages that could be caused to the party wall?

Cheers all
Kip

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Old 12-09-2007, 10:08 AM   #2
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Loft conversion - doing it ourselves?


Kip, where are you located?

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Old 12-09-2007, 10:49 AM   #3
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Loft conversion - doing it ourselves?


Not sure exactly how it works in the UK but I would assume that if you can secure a permit for the work from the building inpsectors office and the work is signed off on/ approved then it would be o.k.

The bad part is since there is a party wall involved it may cause some other issues. Including liability if there is an issue as you stated.

Is the "council" the governing body of the local homeowners association?
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Old 12-09-2007, 07:45 PM   #4
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Loft conversion - doing it ourselves?


If this is a condo association, they can probably have just about any rule they wanted to have. Check your agreement, and see if it says anything about doing your own renovations, versus using a "trade federation" builder.
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Old 12-09-2007, 09:45 PM   #5
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Loft conversion - doing it ourselves?


Your situation is similar to what we experience in New York when a tenant in a building decides to "save money" by using nonunion labor - in their case it's their lease, in your case it's your building's covanent, that prohibits you from using anyhting but proven, qualified labor.

Saving a buck (or a pound) on painting is fine. Not construction in a building that is not actually yours.
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Old 12-10-2007, 03:47 AM   #6
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Loft conversion - doing it ourselves?


thanks for your replies.

im in essex, uk and my local council has given planning permission for the work to go ahead.

I am share of freehold in a top floor flat of a converted terrace (2 flats in total).

Regarding party wall, I have served a party wall notice of which woulddam make me liable for any ages caused to the 3rd party wall? So if either myself or the builders have insurance on the project it should be none of the neighbours business which builders i use to carry out the work? Is this correct?

thanks
kip
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Old 12-10-2007, 06:29 AM   #7
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Loft conversion - doing it ourselves?


No, it is your neighbour's business. Do you think it's OK to let a 10 year old drive a car on the public streets, just because it's insured? Likewise, your neighbours demand some kind of recognized qualifications.
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Old 12-11-2007, 10:50 AM   #8
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Loft conversion - doing it ourselves?


Kip, in essence you are correct . I think there may be other reasons why your neighbor wants building federation members, he/she may be supporters of said federations, they may have used members at higher cost and feel that you should pay as well or it just might be that they're difficult folks in which case you'll have years of fun with them as neighbors.

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