Our specialism is in undertaking detailed building surveys of older properties, including listed buildings.
Detailed building surveys consist of a thorough inspection of all accessible parts of the property with the aim to establish how the property is built and advise on future maintenance. Our report includes detailed information on the condition of the building’s fabric and finishes, visible defects and potential problems, and considers environmental issues. Advice is given on implications of any significant defects and the estimated cost of remedial work.
One of our clients commissioned us to survey a listed house with annex near Wisbech. After receiving our report which identified an outbreak of dry rot (part hidden by furniture), she subsequently found another property in Lincolnshire. We carried out a further survey on the Lincolnshire property and although our report identified some issues with the building, they were not significant and she has moved into the house.
During the last 12 months we have continued to give expert advice on party wall issues to owners and their neighbours in over 60 locations in the Bedfordshire, Hertfordshire and Milton Keynes areas. Owners have sought our advice when planning to undertake work to walls separating two properties or where extensions are being built near a neighbour’s building. We have also represented neighbours giving them advice on building proposals and represented them in the Award process.
Listed Building Works
Heritage buildings often have inherent restrictions that make it more difficult to carry out refurbishment or improvements. They can often bring challenges, however we have the expertise to advise on suitable conservation approaches to minimise or remove harm to the listed buildings.
One recent example of alterations to a listed building is The Kingfisher (formerly known as The Barns Hotel) where we obtained listed building consent and project managed alterations and reinstatement following flood damage. This involved substantial works to reinstate the Grade II listed building. Various improvements were made to the internal layout to enhance the overall atmosphere, and sensor lighting and taps were introduced to reduce energy and water consumption.
Everything took careful planning. We carried out all negotiations with the Conservation Officer, prepared all the necessary detailed drawings, gained the appropriate consents from Bedford Borough Council and project managed the works through to completion.
Insurance Reinstatement & Assessments
When was the last time you reviewed the cost of replacing all your buildings? We have carried out numerous building cost reinstatement assessments and helped ensure clients are adequately insured should they incur loss because of fire, flood or storm.
With recent labour and material price increases, it is essential you have the peace of mind to know everything is covered. Those who own listed or heritage properties are especially at risk and we have the expertise to advise you.
Recently we have advised clients on various properties ranging from an 18th Century house in Cambridgeshire to a 17 unit business park in Kempston.
Boundary & Construction Disputes
In the last 12 months we have been involved with numerous boundary disputes and instances where building works have gone horribly wrong.
No one likes to be embroiled in a dispute. They can be extremely time consuming, costly and often lead to an irreversible falling out with either your neighbour or the builders involved.
We are pleased to say that following investigations and advice, all the parties we have recently acted for have managed to remain out of the courtroom. The earlier we get involved to interpret the available evidence, the sooner we can advise upon your options. If matters escalate and the need arises, we can prepare an Expert Report to comply with Part 35 of the Civil Procedure Rules to help support your case.
Keeping your property warm has become increasingly expensive and more people are investigating greener alternatives and trying to become more energy conscious to reduce their own carbon footprint.
We can help you make your properties more energy efficient and save you money. Whether it’s incorporating a new air source heat pump, improving insulation, or other sustainable technology, we can guide you through all the regulations and ensure you futureproof your assets. If you’re considering a building project, please include us at an early stage as many of these aspects can easily be designed and incorporated in your building works and trying to do them retrospectively can be expensive.
For further information to find out how we can help you, please contact Robert.Back to articles