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Buachaill, Barrister
Category: Law
Satisfied Customers: 10974
Experience:  Barrister 17 years experience
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I bought a flat in a new development in South London. I can

Customer Question

I bought a flat in a new development in South London. I can hear my neighbours walking about upstairs and this can be horribly noisy even though all they are doing is gong about their normal daily lives. I have challenged the Developer who carried out a sound test and have assured me that the results show that their tests show that both airborne and impact sound is within Building Regulation requirements. I know for a fact that my neighbours are experiencing the same problem but we are all currently being stonewalled by the Developer/ consortium that manage the property.I would be grateful for any advice you have to offer regarding my options
Submitted: 2 years ago.
Category: Law
Expert:  Buachaill replied 2 years ago.
1. The first thing you need to do here is to get an engineer to come out to your and your neighbour's flat and carry out a sound test to determine whether the passage of sound is within Building Control Regulations or not. Until you have hard evidence of whether the sound passage exceeds permitted levels or not, you have nothing to base a case upon. However, the moment you can show the sound levels exceed permitted Building control levels, you can sue the builder to retroactively install sound proofing. But first you need hard evidence to rebu
Expert:  Buachaill replied 2 years ago.
Rebut the builders builders contention that everything is in accordance with the law.
Customer: replied 2 years ago.
I have done that already! Perhaps my question did not make it clear enough - at my request the Developer of my property (which is in a purpose built block of flats) , did get an external ( independent???) Sound Engineer to undertake the test between my neighbour above me's flat and mine. They have sent me the results- which as I say indicate that the airborne/ impact sounds are within permitted range. However there is no doubt in my mind (and that of several of my neighbours) that the impact noise is intrusive and a nuisance. What can I do to challenge this?
Expert:  Buachaill replied 2 years ago.
2. Apologies for not noting the "external" sound test. However, you need to get your own sound test done here to ascertain the position. Do not rely upon the developers test. This is because if this matter ever goes to court and litigation, you will have to prove your assertion that the materials used are flawed by expert evidence of your own. No developer will readily admit to defects in a new building. So the first job is to show that there is a defect. Here, you need expert evidence. Be aware that if you succeed it means the developer will suddenly be facing a loss of profit on the FULL development. So he will do anything to show otherwise! So get a proper test done. It is foolish to rely upon the builders "expert". Once you can show there is something wrong you can challenge the builders test and also seek to have your apartment sound proofed by the developer.