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Harringay, Haringey - So Good they Spelt it Twice!

Hi

i received a letter in the post from Haringey Planning Service informing me that the owner of the adjoining property to mine (A Property that is converted into a number of rented Studio flats) has submitted a notice of prior approval to extend  the rear ground floor by 6m.

I have viewed the planning application on line and have a few questions to ask about the development and am not sure who to direct these questions to. 

For instance:

Our properties are North facing and I am concerned how an extension will impact on the natural light available to the living area(s) of my flat which are garden side and are already relatively dark. Can I request some kind of light impact assessment? Would I have to bear the cost of this?

The application states that the extension will be 6m beyond the rear wall of the original house, so, as an extension of 3.5m is already in situ, does that mean the extension should only be 2.5m?

Is a HMO still classified as a House even though the property has been converted into flats and this application is essentially about extending a ground floor flat?

What is proposed in relation to the Boundary between our properties (part wall/part fence) and which is part of my property as far as I know?

I do have more questions but I don’t want to bore you with them here.

If I could just add that I have no objection in principle to home extensions/improvements etc but I really need to know what to expect and what impact it will have on me.

Can anyone advise me what I should do at this stage ?

Thanks for reading

Mags

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If my neighbour lived there, and wanted to extend, I'd be sympathetic. But since it is turning your next door, let's say 6 bed into a 6 bed, and is essentially a commercial development, that is different. I'd object, and to your credit, you come across as very very reasonable.

also is there not something in council planning policy that won't allow conversions to HMO anymore? If so, extending an HMO, does not make sense. And it is hard to see how it does not effect your light?

Hello Vikram

Thanks for your response. All advice is gratefully received.

i believe the house is divided into 6 or 7 Studio flats and, from what I can see on the plans it looks like the intention is to convert the rear ground floor Studio into a One Bed flat. That’s my interpretation anyway. I would need to check with the Planning Officer.

Unfortunately, despite calling the Planning Officer every day this week only to hear a message telling me that she is “currently unavailable, try later” and getting no replies to my emails, I still have not had the opportunity to discuss my concerns/queries. Today, the Planning Office Admin said they would escalate my call to a Manager who would call me back before 5pm. He didn’t. They are all working from home so it’s not possible either to make a F2F appt.

I’m not sure when the property was converted to a HMO but it was certainly more than 7 years ago.

The light issue is my main concern, my north facing flat already lacks natural light and the only part of my garden that grows anything decent will be overshadowed by this extension. Of course, I may be overthinking it and it won’t be quite as gloomy as I am imagining but I really need to know what impact it will have.

So, will start the calling and emailing again on Monday!

Thanks again Vikram, have a good weekend!

Best

Maggie

If you can’t get hold of a Planning Manager I would get in touch with your local councillor or the one with planning responsibility to complain about the lack of response when time is short.. Some of them are very good at chasing up negligent departments

Really good idea - especially as the discussion needs to happen BEFORE the officer decision

Thanks Michael

After a slow start from the Planning Dept who are all working remotely, the ball is now rolling with regard to discussions and email communication both ways.

Yes, it was a good idea from Jacqueline about Councillor involvement, I would never have thought of that.

Have a good weekend!

  • Mags

Thanks Jacqueline for your sound advice.

After 5 days of no response from the allocated Planning Officer I was escalated to a Planning Manager who was quite helpful in advising me around what I should and could do and today, the elusive allocated Officer called me.

Needless to say, I have had some useful conversations and email communication with both of them so I now feel better informed about the process and what should be done at this stage.

Thanks again Jacqueline, 

Mags

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