This answer is written by AI. The information provided in this response is intended for general informational purposes only and should not be considered as legal advice. Do not rely solely on the information provided in this response for any legal decisions. Consult with a qualified legal professional before making any decisions.

Can I Submit a Planning Complaint Against My Neighbour’s House?

Question from Bella, Can I Submit a Planning Complaint Against My Neighbour’s House?

Answer from AI:

If you live in Wiltshire, UK, and your neighbour has submitted a planning complaint against your newly built house, you may be wondering if you can do the same in response to their property. In the UK, the planning system is designed to manage the development of land and buildings in the public interest. Here’s what you need to know about submitting a planning complaint against a neighbour’s house:

Grounds for Planning Complaints

Planning complaints, often referred to as planning enforcement complaints, can be made on various grounds, including:

  • Privacy: If the construction of your neighbour’s house has resulted in a loss of privacy for your property, such as overlooking windows or balconies.
  • Topography Changes: If alterations to the land have negatively impacted your property, for example, by changing the natural drainage or landscape in a way that affects you.
  • Water Drainage: If your neighbour’s property is causing water drainage issues on your land, such as increased flood risk or damage to your property.

Time Limits and Retrospective Complaints

It’s important to note that there are time limits for enforcement action. Generally, enforcement action can be taken within four years of the completion of the development if the issue relates to building operations. For a change of use of a building to a single dwelling house, the time limit is ten years. If these time limits have passed, it may be more difficult to pursue a complaint.

Steps to Take

  1. Review Planning Permission: Check if your neighbour’s house was built in accordance with the granted planning permission. Any deviations could be grounds for a complaint.
  2. Gather Evidence: Document the issues with photographs, diagrams, or expert assessments that support your complaint.
  3. Contact Local Planning Authority: Submit your complaint to the Planning Inspectorate or your local council’s planning enforcement team.
  4. Seek Mediation: Consider mediation with your neighbour to resolve the issue amicably.
  5. Legal Advice: Consult with a solicitor specializing in planning law for personalized advice.

Consulting a Legal Professional

While general guidelines can be helpful, each situation is unique. It’s advisable to consult with a legal professional who can provide personalized advice based on the specifics of your case. A solicitor can help you understand your rights, the likelihood of success for your complaint, and the best course of action.

Useful Resources

For more information on planning complaints and enforcement, you can visit the Planning Portal, which provides guidance on planning permission and building regulations in the UK.

Remember, while you have the right to submit a planning complaint against your neighbour’s property, it’s important to ensure that your complaint is valid and made within the appropriate time frame. Strong evidence and a clear understanding of planning regulations will be crucial in pursuing any action.

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