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Hello and thank you for your question. I will be very pleased to assist you. I'm a practicing lawyer in England with over 10 years experience.
May I ask leaving aside the renovation works, in what ways the neighbours upstairs are being noisy please? i.e. are they undertaking unusual activities in the flat to cause noise?
Do you know if the flat is carpeted or if it has hard flooring?
The neighbors are downstairs. We are upstairs the noise recently has improved due to his renovation is almost complete howevr other recent issues have come to light like terrible smell of cooking which stinks our flat ouit and the afore mentioned incident with the bins
The real question is how best to approach him with the intent of an amicable outcome as we would like to sell our flat so do not want any disputes which might affect the sale of the property
Thanks. Do you consider the noise issue will not be an ongoing problem following completion of his renovations? Has the cooking smell been an issue in the past or do you think it is due to the work he has had carried out?
We think its due to work being carried out he has just renovated his kitchen and that is when we noticed the strong smell like wild garlic . This happens three or four times a week usually its just our kitchen but we could smell it as we were lying bed at 10.30pm one night
The works he is undertaking will almost certainly require building regulation approval which includes substantive provisions relating to ventilation and the like. You can consider advising him about the smell and asking him to look at the issue. Failing this you can make a report to the Building Control department at the council who can inspect and require him to remedy any issues within 12 months of completion of the work and the Building Act.
In terms of the bins, are these being placed over an area he has a right of way?
If so does it substantively reduce his ability to exercise his right of way over the path?
It is on a patio at side of my front door this does not block my back garden gate which gives him access to his back garden, If he walks out of my back garden gate he can freely walk on the grass. On the patio sidewalk wher my bins are there is a drainpipe coming down side of building which partly blocks oath I keep the bins on the side of drainpipe closets to my front dooe. All the other upstairs tenants in our close do as I do and they have no disputes with their downstairs neighbors. He has never approached me about this and appears to move our bins when he thinks we are not in the house
Thank you. If he has a right of way over the path leading to the gate the courts have held that putting something blocking that right of way to some extent is not a lawful impediment unless it makes the right of way substantively more difficult to exercise. Therefore if the bins are preventing him using the path then this would be unlawful but if he can as readily use the right of way irrespective of the bins then this is not an actionable legal complaint on his part.
In terms of how you may consider dealing with him. As you say such matters are if possible best resolved by amicable agreement rather than legal action. If possible you may consider asking perhaps to meet for a cup of coffee to discuss the issues amicably and gently suggest some proposals which you are both satisfied with expressing your concern that you may have both gotten off on the wrong foot. Sometimes this can be successful.
If he is unreasonable then you can a) ask the local authority to take steps under building regulations re the smell and in addition could seek to make a complaint regarding statutory nuisance regarding the same. b) in respect of the bins, again make a complaint regarding statutory nuisance if he is moving your bins causing rubbish to all out. If necessary in addition to asking the council to assist with such complaints you could seek a private injunction in the county court though this would incur court fees as opposed to council action which is free to you.
If you were to wish to put in place an injunction privately you would need form N16A
Is there anything above I can clarify for you?
No thank you very much Joshua
A pleasure. I hope you are able to come to an amicable agreement. If I can assist any further as the situation develops please do no hesitate to let me know.
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