Latest blog posts: Surveying

We are often contacted by homeowners who are concerned about cracks in their properties. Recently we have inspected a number of period properties where the owners have noticed cracking around brick arches. Brick arches are found within openings in walls, typically above windows and doors. They function to support the wall above the opening, ... Read more >>

The Story of the Collapsing House in Finchley

Sunday, 19th April 2015 | by: William Weaver

Every now and then there is a catastrophic incident involving the construction industry somewhere in the UK. When a house collapses it gets reported in the national press and sometimes on radio and TV. It’s a dramatic event but fortunately it doesn’t happen that often. A recently reported case involved an ordinary medium sized, Victorian, ... Read more >>

Rising Damp – Common Property Defects #1

Friday, 10th April 2015 | by: Steve Hobbs

Rising damp is often first noticed by homeowners when it materialises as distress within the plaster of internal walls, peeling and blistering of wall decorations, and sometimes signs of rot in skirting boards and other woodwork. In some cases dark staining and a tide mark type line is visible. Rising damp occurs when masonry walls stand in ... Read more >>

Changes to Capital Gains Tax Affecting Foreign Investors

Sunday, 1st March 2015 | by: Justin Burns

Over the last couple of weeks we’ve begun to receive calls from overseas investors or their agents concerned about the change to Capital Gains Tax which is due to come in to force on 6th April this year. Announcing the change in his 2013 Autumn Statement, George Osborne, UK Chancellor of the Exchequer said “It is not right that those who ... Read more >>

Categories: Surveying, Valuation

The Role of the ‘Agreed’ Surveyor

Wednesday, 25th February 2015 | by: Justin Burns

I’ve been meaning to write a post for a while that I could link to when an owner asks me to explain the role of the ‘Agreed Surveyor’ as it’s a difficult concept. The question tends to be asked by an adjoining owner who has already appointed me to act for them and has been approached by the building owner to ask if I’d be willing to act ... Read more >>

Categories: Party Walls, Surveying

The Most Important Party Walls Article You’ll Read

Sunday, 1st February 2015 | by: Justin Burns

I would estimate that at least 80% of misunderstandings relating to the The Party Wall etc. Act 1996 could be cleared up if people understood the purpose and process as outlined in these 6 steps: The building owner (the party undertaking the work) notifies affected adjoining owners of any work falling within the scope of the Act. Upon ... Read more >>

Categories: Party Walls, Surveying

Assessing a Fair Lease Extension Premium: The Impartial Approach

Monday, 15th September 2014 | by: Steve Hobbs

The statutory lease extension process, as with so many Landlord and Tenant matters, is traditionally adversarial. However, it need not necessarily be so. In most instances the leaseholder simply wants to extend their lease with the minimum fuss and expense and without being extorted in the process. Likewise, many non-institutional freeholders are ... Read more >>

The most common way for a leaseholder to extend their lease involves a solicitor serving a Section 42 notice (S42) on their freeholder under the Leasehold Reform, Housing and Urban Development Act 1993. This notice not only compels the Freeholder to grant the lessee a new lease equal to the existing term plus 90 years at a peppercorn ground rent, ... Read more >>

A question came up on a recent party wall job which led to an interesting debate on what the section 11(11) expenses should cover when one owner re-builds a party fence wall as a party wall and the other owner later makes use of it. Section 11(11) of the Act states that: Where use is subsequently made by the adjoining owner of work carried ... Read more >>

Waterproofing Solid Brick Walls

Saturday, 8th March 2014 | by: Justin Burns

As a result of the extreme weather over recent weeks I’ve taken a couple of calls from owners who have experienced dampness penetrating through solid walls as a result of driving rain. You’d think that a 215mm thick solid brick wall would provide a sufficient barrier to rain but often defects will arise which means that’s not the ... Read more >>

Categories: Surveying

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