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Latest blog posts

Essex Barn Renovation – Insulation

Saturday, 3rd August 2013 | by: Justin Burns

We’re now a little over halfway through phase 1 of our barn refurbishment. The structure of the barn is long and narrow so it divides quite neatly in to 2 parts with a sound and dust proof screen in the middle. Phase 1, the smaller half of the barn, is programmed to take 9 weeks following which we swap halves with the builders and work continues ... Read more >>

Adjoining Owners’ Surveyor’s Fees

Friday, 12th July 2013 | by: Justin Burns

3 Chartered Surveyors were set a challenge by their boss to increase fee income in the year ahead by 10%. The building surveyor spent time networking with solicitors and estate agents to generate recommendations and worked an extra half an hour each day. The valuation surveyor managed to get on to a couple of new lender panels and spent ... Read more >>

Categories: Party Walls, Surveying

Essex Barn Renovation – The Planning Process

Tuesday, 9th July 2013 | by: Justin Burns

As you can see from the picture below, work is now well underway on the refurbishment of our barn. The lower part of that space was my bedroom until last Sunday evening! As only demolition work has happened so far I thought I’d provide a quick overview of the planning process in this post. The barn is Grade II listed so any changes, ... Read more >>

New Rules Covering Rear Extensions

Friday, 28th June 2013 | by: Justin Burns

Following a public consultation and weeks of political wrangling temporary changes to the Permitted Development rules came in to force on 30th May 2013. Until 30th May 2016 homeowners have the right to build larger (i.e. deeper) single-storey rear extensions without having to apply for planning permission. The size limits will double from 4 ... Read more >>

Inverted Pitched Roofs – Common Defects

Friday, 28th June 2013 | by: Justin Burns

In this post we will be looking at roofs. I thought I would start with a riddle, what is one of the most common types of roof in London, but is rarely seen? The roof type in question has a number of different names, including ‘inverted pitch roof’, ‘butterfly roof’ and even ‘London Roof’. It is, as one of its names suggests, a pitched ... Read more >>

Categories: Surveying

Essex Barn Renovation

Friday, 28th June 2013 | by: Justin Burns

Having talked about it for many years my family and I ‘escaped to the country’ in October last year; specifically to a converted barn on the edge of a little Essex village. When we started our search we laid down certain criteria, the property had to be: Within a 1 hour drive of Peter Barry’s North London office. In a rural ... Read more >>

A New Way to Resolve Boundary Disputes

Friday, 5th April 2013 | by: Justin Burns

You’ve probably read newspaper articles about warring neighbours who’ve spent tens of thousands of pounds going to court over a 6 inch strip of land.  Until now boundary disputes have been dealt with by the courts and the lack of a statutory framework means that costs often escalate to level well in excess of the value of the land that is ... Read more >>

Categories: Party Walls, Surveying

Changes to Permitted Development Order

Monday, 19th November 2012 | by: Justin Burns

Some two and a half months after Eric Pickles stood up in Parliament and announced that the Government planned to ease the rules relating to residential extensions the promised consultation period has finally begun. In case you missed the announcement the most significant part was a proposal that the owners of terraced or semi-detached ... Read more >>

Categories: Surveying

The Benefits of Extending Your Lease in Good Time

Friday, 9th November 2012 | by: Peter Barry

If you own a flat or maisonette it is almost certainly held on a lease. The original term of the lease is likely to have been 99 or 125 years and there will be provisions for the Landlord to collect ground rent every year at an amount that will normally increase throughout the term of the lease. As the remaining term of the lease reduces so ... Read more >>

Subterranean Development Bill

Saturday, 4th August 2012 | by: Justin Burns

The Subterranean Development Bill was originally an amendment to the Localism Bill sponsored by Lord Selsdon and drafted by members of the Pyramus & Thisbe Club. The driving force behind the bill appears to be resident associations in affluent areas of London such as Belgravia and Highgate where many members of the House of Lords have ... Read more >>

Categories: Party Walls, Surveying