Will neighbouring construction works affect my property? – John, QLD

Our Body Corp committee has recently learned there will be construction works on the immediate neighbouring property. Currently there is only two houses on the neighbouring property, they will be removed. From the plans, we understand there will be construction including extensive digging for below ground car parks etc and we , the committee, wish to know how the integrity of our own building is assured during this construction at close proximity, and what professional service should we seek to engage to ensure we are aware of our rights and that the developer follows all regulations etc.

– John, QLD

We suggest that a dilapidation report be carried out on your building prior to commencement of the construction, which will showcase the condition of your building. Once the report is completed the committee should communicate with the developer and the construction company and raise their concerns. The best practise is for this to be communicated via your legal representative.

As a general rule developers are required to carry out works to protect or strengthen the foundations of any building that could be affected by their proposed works. This is subject to your region’s development laws and should be checked with your building authority. In Queensland, the authority would be the Queensland Building & Construction Commission (QBCC) who possess a handy neighbourhood issues page which can lead you in the right direction. You may find more details here.

Please note, construction works in your neighbourhood may also lead to noise and dust pollution, traffic congestion and general disruption of life around the area. Depending on the kind of construction work being done and its closeness to your property, all of these factors may impact your property, health and safety, either directly or indirectly. So, it is important you know your rights and take precautions for your protection.

You can raise any concerns regarding construction noise, dust, traffic management, rubbish removal, parking, etc. with the council at time of the development application. If the development approval time has closed, make sure to have your legal representative communicate this to the developer.

Queensland law outlines various codes of practice and compliance requirements for the health and safety of workers and residents in and around construction areas. You may contact your body corporate manager for more information on this subject through your local council or building authority.

 For more information in relation to compliant construction and what to look for, read our article on defective building and compliance.