How to Keep Your Neighbours Happy When Refurbishing Your Home

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It’s easy for tensions to rise between you and your neighbours when you’re refurbishing your home.

So, what steps can you take to keep everybody happy?

Carrying out refurbishments on your home is an exciting prospect, right?

After all, when the works are complete, you’ll (hopefully) be living the in the property of your dreams.

But, as you’ll probably be aware if you’ve found yourself reading this post, refurbishments aren’t always straightforward.

It turns out that gutting a property, knocking through walls and building extensions can be rather noisy and disruptive – who knew?

This means that neighbours can quickly become irritated while work is ongoing, with the potential for small-scale arguments to develop into a full-blown residential property dispute.

In this post, we’ve put together a number of useful tips, which can be used to make sure that everything remains rosy between you and your neighbours. Take a look…

9 Tips to Keep Your Neighbours Happy When Refurbishing Your Home

1.     Take Time to Introduce Yourself if You’ve Recently Moved In

If you’re new to the area, you’re not going to be making many friends if you immediately start refurbishing your new home before properly introducing yourself to your neighbours!

You don’t need to go as far as to invite all of your neighbours round for dinner. However, a short introduction will allow you to build a very simple bond and reduce the chances of anyone having an issue with your renovation plans.

Introducing yourself to your neighbours will also give you the chance to explain your refurbishment plans in more detail.

2.     Give Plenty of Advance Notice

Speaking of which, you can reduce the potential for an argument with your neighbours by giving plenty of advance notice.

If you give your neighbours a few weeks warning, it gives them the opportunity to discuss whether they have any issues they’d like to discuss. Or, if they’re really opposed to noise, they might even think about booking some time away.

Starting work without any pre-warning is only likely to lead to trouble, so a quick warning well in advance is more than just sensible – it’s essential!

3.     Be Open and Honest About the Work You’re Carrying Out

Disclosing what you plan to renovate isn’t always easy, particularly when you know that the work is going to be noisy, messy, and take plenty of time to complete. That being said, you should always be as open and honest as possible with your neighbours so they can properly prepare themselves for the work that’s being carried out.

There’s no use in trying to hide what you want to do, or suggest it’s going to take less time than it actually will, as this will only backfire in the future. On that same note, you should always check if you need planning permission before you complete any work.

4.     Provide a Timeline

If you want to appease your neighbours before you start the work, then it’s a sensible idea to provide them with a simple timeline for when you expect everything to be complete.

It should go without saying, but you shouldn’t try and be overly ambitious. Going over-schedule isn’t going to win you any favours, while completing well ahead of schedule will surely do the opposite.

Even if the timeline demonstrates that your renovations will take some time to complete, your neighbours will certainly appreciate the heads up.

5.     Share Your Contact Information

It’s a good idea to share your basic contact information, such as your phone number, with your neighbours. This way, they can get in touch with you if they have any issues with the refurbishment.

If you’re able to communicate with one another effectively, the chances of a dispute occurring, or spiralling out of control, can be greatly reduced.

6.     Work at Reasonable Hours

Common sense really. You’re only going to stir up trouble if you start your refurbishment work in the early hours of the morning and continue right the way through till the middle of the night. People need their sleep – and so do you for that matter!

Pick a reasonable time slot during the day to do your work and try to stick to this as best as you can. It might take longer to get the work done, but you’ll be keeping your neighbours appeased at the same time.

7.     Ask Any Workers to be Respectful

If the refurbishment you’re carrying out is pretty substantial, you might not be working alone. If you’re employing a third-party to help you get the work done, then you should give them a few ground rules to follow so that they can keep the level of disruption to a minimum.

If you think that it might be difficult to keep them in line, a few hot beverages throughout the day will usually appease them.

8.     Employ Workers You Trust

If you’ve got a third-party on site, then you’ll want to make sure that they’re a group that you can trust!

If you don’t personally know anyone that you can rely on to carry out refurbishments in a sensible manner, then a friend, family member or colleague certainly will. Don’t be afraid to ask around for recommendations if you find yourself stuck.

9.     Remember Your Boundaries

Simple really – don’t go knocking down any party walls or fences that you share with your neighbours. This sounds like obvious advice, but it’s amazing how many people land themselves in hot water with their neighbours when they overstep their boundaries without knowing.

Get a clear idea what your boundaries are and make sure you respect them.

Are You Concerned About a Neighbour Dispute When You Refurbish Your Home?

In this post, we’ve covered just some of the ways you can keep your neighbours happy when you’re carrying out refurbishments on your home. You can’t always guarantee that your neighbours are going to be thrilled at the sounds of drills and the sight of an onsite skip, but as long as you aren’t at odds with one another, you should be fine!

What’s more, if you need some advice regarding your boundaries, be sure to get in touch with a solicitor or other expert to get it right. What’s more, if you’ve got any more tips for keeping neighbours happy while refurbishing, be sure to leave them in the comments below.

Photo credits:

Photo 1 – Daniela Gisin-Krumsick via Unsplash

Photo 2 – Milivoj Kuhar via Unsplash

Photo 3 – Nolan Issac via Unsplash

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