If you are planning to build an extension, you will likely need to request planning permission. If so, your neighbours will be notified by post. Councils usually provide a public consultation period of 21 days from the date of the notice for people to give feedback or challenge the application. It’s not unusual for a neighbour to take issue with a home extension and attempt to stop you from shaping your home the way you’d like. So in short, yes your neighbour can block extension plans?
If your extension plans infringe in certain ways on the properties that border yours, it’s possible that your neighbour(s) will ask the council to reject your plans. The best way to avoid conflict is to talk to your neighbours ahead of hiring an architect, letting them know what you would like to do, how far you want to build out and get their reaction. If they seem happy with what you would ideally like, great proceed. If they seem reluctant, is there room for negotiation?
Why would a neighbour stop my plans for building extension?
There are several reasons why neighbours might object to your extension plans, but there are four issues that typically trigger disputes:
You’ll be shading their property or blocking their view. If that’s the case, it’s considered a valid reason to contest the extension. If your own garden or conservatory were suddenly blocked from the sun, you’d probably feel the same way.
Privacy will be impacted. If the extension overlooks your neighbour’s property, they might see it as an invasion of privacy. In this case, can you alter the drawings to keep both parties happy?
Housing prices may be affected. If an extension comes close to your neighbour’s boundary, it might affect the value of their house on the property market.
Why is Planning Permission so important?
Some extensions need planning permission from the local authority. If you’re planning a small extension and doesn’t have any of the issues described above, you might be OK, However, seek professional advice. You will also need to involve Building Control at certain stages of the build too.
What does the council look for when you submit plans for an extension?
If a neighbour objects and finds that you don’t meet any of these guidelines, they could reject your plans.
As mentioned earlier, prevention is best. If it’s feasible, let neighbours know about your plans before hiring any professionals to try to get them onside. Allow them to ask questions or voice concerns and see if you can accommodate them. A friendly and open approach will help keep the peace and give your plans a fighting chance of being approved. Also allow yourself enough time before you plan to start the build to get the paperwork in order – we recommend up to three months.
What professional services will I need for my extension?
To complete a house extension, you will most likely need: