One of the big potential issues with neighbours is planning permission. Construction work can potentially result in disruption and some people may be concerned that work could infringe on their boundaries. This can result in disputes and court action which is why it is vital to find ways to resolve planning issues as soon as possible.

Define boundaries

Defining the boundaries should be done before any work is even considered. You need to know who has the rights to what area, who has access and so forth. While this may sound obvious if you build on a disputed area this can lead to problems (the classic example being someone growing tall bushes that cover a neighbour’s view).

Discuss it first

While you should provide notice before any construction work begins it is worth discussing your proposed work before any formalities. This can allow neighbours to raise any potential concerns in a calm and rational way.

If you want to dispute

In the case of a council’s proposed plans it is possible to raise formal objections. There are ways of doing this although it is recommended you avoid using template letters as this can look like everyone is copying each other (furthermore you should be able to give your own opinion regarding any proposed changes).

One thing to be aware of is that when objecting to a council proposal your comments may be read out (unless they are deemed to be offensive, irrelevant etc) so it is vital you consider what you are saying before submitting it.


In any dispute various factors will be looked at to see whether or not a proposed idea is viable. It could be perceived that the building is deemed to be out of place from others in the local area or that it could affect the privacy of local residents. Another major concern could be its effect on the local wildlife (especially if it is a local conservation area) or potential disruption in terms of noise and noise pollution.

It should also be noted that some factors are not deemed relevant in these decisions – for example, any developments to buildings in future would not be taken into account or something along the lines of a loss of view or the feeling that a claimant would be profiting from the new development.

Contact us

As you can see this can be potentially difficult for a number of different reasons. Whether you are looking to build something on your property or you wish to object to someone else’s proposal there are a lot of issues involved. This is both potentially a legally difficult situation and also a highly emotive one.

This is why we recommend contacting our legal specialists. Aside from knowing the rules around planning permission we can also help to settle disputes and find a resolution to difficult planning permission issues. For more information contact us today and we will be happy to discuss your case in more detail.