Having a neighboring business or residential property under construction can be a stressful time for anyone. Business owners or families may be worried about ongoing noise, increased traffic, pollutants in the air, or even damage to their own property. For anyone that has found themselves in one of these situations, here is a look at some simple tips, tricks, and tools that can be used to make this process as stress-free as possible.
Communicate with Your Neighbors
During any major construction there are sure to be some minor mishaps or disagreements, but one of the easiest ways to avoid these problems from escalating is to preemptively open up lines of communication. Home or business owners should speak with their neighbors and the neighbor’s contractors and attempt to start this process out as friendly as possible. Inviting the neighbor and contractor to any meetings for the HOA, historical preservation societies, Planning Committee, or any other local planning organization is also a good idea.
Research City Statutes
Local statutes about remodeling and construction can become extremely complex, but it is worth it to take a fresh look at them before any major projects get underway. At the very least, business and homeowners can brush up on some basic information such as the proper hours of construction and what changes must be made to avoid traffic or parking issues. By doing this, locals will know when a problem has escalated and assistance will be needed.
Inquire About Their Insurance Coverage
Every construction project should be fully insured and bonded, and it is not out of line for neighbors to inquire about what type of coverage the company has. The average policies for these projects will protect those on-site as well as anyone on neighboring property from injuries that occur. There are also a wide variety of situations in which damage may occur to neighboring buildings, and this should be covered by contractor insurance. Contractors operating without insurance, permits, and bonding should be reported to the police.
Have Your Property Surveyed Again
Residents have every right to keep their property free from any unwanted buildings, materials, or people. If there is some doubt about the exact dividing line between two properties, a surveyor may need to be contacted. Modern surveyors use advanced techniques to figure out the boundary between two properties down to the inch. They can also instruct their clients on more abstract laws such as how far their property extends downwards and upwards according to local statutes.
Speak with an Attorney
The best method of protecting your property from a nearby construction project is taking a few preemptive steps, but this will not always work. In some unfortunate scenarios, home and business owners may need to go out of their comfort zone and contact a local attorney to explore their legal options. This is especially important if you have had any property damaged or anyone has been injured on or around your property. Other serious problems such as contaminants in the air or unorthodox hours of construction may also require an attorney.
If any neighboring construction has left you with your back up against the wall, it is important to take immediate action. The longer these issues take place the more difficult and complex they can become for all parties involved.