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Annoying neighbours

(12 Posts)
grandmac Wed 23-Mar-16 11:39:06

Almost 2 years ago I got a new neighbour. Since she arrived there have been building works going on. I won't detail them as it would be too boring, but it culminated in the original house being demolished and now in the process of being rebuilt. People move to this road because it is quiet and has magnificent sea views. Unfortunately I don't get to see the view much now as there are always lorries, vans and cars (including hers) parked in front of my house.

On the original plans there was a small window overlooking my property, but up high and not able to have direct views into my house due to my carport. But now a large window right opposite my bathroom window has appeared. My window is obscured glass but the neighbour's is not. I asked her about it and she said they had to change it from the small window due to health and safety in case there was a fire. But wouldn't the building regs people have let me know if that was the case? And she said she would obscure it. Now a few weeks later I have found out she means just to cover it with a sticky film. (But not yet done)

I know you can't see detail through the obscured glass in my window but you can see shapes and movement which makes me feel vulnerable, and now I always have to drop the blind whenever I go in there to use the loo or shower.

AIBU to expect that her glass be changed to proper obscured glass? I don't want to be a nasty neighbour but should I contact the council?

ninathenana Wed 23-Mar-16 11:56:13

I think it's worth looking into. I'm pretty sure there are planning regs with regard to windows overlooking your property, particularly in such close proximity.
Your not being unreasonable.

PRINTMISS Wed 23-Mar-16 12:00:20

I do not think that would have been changed without first consulting/advising you of the fact. I would most definitely check, and if you are not happy, you can state your case.

TerriBull Wed 23-Mar-16 12:24:54

We had windows put in on the first and second floor stairwell on the side of our house to let in more light and when we applied for building regulations, we were told obscured glass would be a requirement, as we have houses, maybe 20 yards or so to the right of these windows. I am sure therefore you are right and your neighbour's window should also have obscured glass. No you are not being unreasonable, I would contact the council if I were you to verify this.

Riverwalk Wed 23-Mar-16 12:34:02

It might be worth checking to see what the Building Regs actually require.

I live in a ground floor flat and my bathroom window (obscured glass) is on an outside wall, partially covered by foliage. Not long after I moved in I came home, in the dark, and noticed that I'd left the bathroom light on and could clearly see the outline shape of washing hanging off the shower rail!

Your neighbours will only be able to 'see' into your bathroom when your light is on and it's dark outside, if that's any consolation.

I have a blackout blind at the window for when I'm having a shower and it's dark outside.

glammanana Wed 23-Mar-16 12:36:26

I would certainly get it checked asap before the build continues any further,I would have thought you would have been notified of any change in the plans by planning dept (thats if they have been told of the changes)

Elegran Wed 23-Mar-16 12:38:33

Our council has a "Planning Portal" where applications for planning permission are published, with detailed plans. Yours probably does too.

I don't think your neighbour could have made the alterations you talk about without permission, so if you do a google search for "planning application" plus the address, you should be able to see just what they applied for - and what was was granted - and if the two don't match he final result, you can contact the planners.

If there doesn't seem to be any application applied for and granted, then they could be in trouble, even up to having to reinstate the house as it was before.

Synonymous Wed 23-Mar-16 12:48:14

If there ought to be obscured glass I would not have thought that a removable film will be acceptable or comply with regulations. Best to have this checked pronto and leave it to the planning people to sort it out if necessary. Be careful to keep good neighbourly relations if at all possible and be seen to be reasonable.
When we were doing a building project a few years back I can remember there were 17 trades vehicle parked all around us and it felt horrendous to us never mind the neighbours. The stress levels go up accordingly and everything becomes magnified and sometimes out of all proportion. It probably seems never ending but it will finish and then you will settle back into the peace and quiet that you enjoy.

Galen Wed 23-Mar-16 13:04:06

Grandmac are you living in my road? We have a similar problem with a new neighbour. We have lorries parking on our parking area and continuous noise from the building work. We also have rubbish being blown into our drives.
I've heard that she has complained we are all old and unfriendly. Some of us have lived here for 35+ years and some of us are disabled.

sunseeker Wed 23-Mar-16 13:13:12

Any alteration to original planning permission (such as a change in size and position of windows) have to be agreed by the Planning Department. All new building work is checked at regular intervals by a Building Inspector. I would contact the planning department and check the change has been agreed by them, if it hasn't they will send the Inspector to check what is happening.

grandmac Wed 23-Mar-16 13:21:40

Thank you everyone for your comments.

I am glad you said I am not being unreasonable. I suspected I was turning into a disgruntled, moany old cow woman!! I will call the council and speak to the planning or building regs people. I think that they are probably not aware of the changes. The windows are about 10ft apart and you can see shapes and movement even without the light on, but before it didn't matter as there was no-one able to look in. blush

harrigran Wed 23-Mar-16 16:21:51

When we had our house renovated an inspector visited and examined the windows, we had to remove the lockable handles on some windows because they were fire exits. The bathroom windows had to be obscure glass even though they were small and only started at shoulder height.