Birmingham NHS worker blasts ‘bizarre’ extension on neighbour’s home


An investigation has been launched into an extension that has left a property just inches away from a neighbouring home.

NHS worker Stuart Smith can no longer access the side of his house in Kings Norton, Birmingham, after a ‘bizarre’ extension of the property next door left only eight inches between the two homes.

The new guttering of his neighbour’s home is actually touching Mr Smith’s. The 42-year-old claims that the extension did not follow plans.

He alleged that builders were not able to properly fit the roof of his neighbours home, so instead built a wall beneath the roof, Birmingham Live reported. 

Mr Smith told the outlet that the ‘overlapping’ guttering has left him worried about drainage and damp seeping into his property. 

An investigation has been launched into an extension that has left a property just inches away from a neighbouring home. NHS worker Stuart Smith can no longer access the side of his house in Kings Norton, Birmingham, after a ‘bizarre’ extension of the property next door left only eight inches between the two homes

The new guttering of his neighbour's home is actually touching Mr Smith's, meaning he may have problems maintaining his own guttering

The new guttering of his neighbour’s home is actually touching Mr Smith’s, meaning he may have problems maintaining his own guttering

The extension, which was intended to add two bedrooms to the previously three-bed home, is now under investigation by Birmingham City Council.

Mr Smith said his neighbours sought planning permission in 2018 for a two storey extension at the front of their home and one storey at the back.

The extension has doubled the size of the property, which now has a bigger kitchen, garage and utility room as well as the additional bedrooms and a loft conversion. 

The Birmingham and Solihull Mental Health Foundation Trust IT worker, said construction began at the end of January 2021.

But it was not until March that Mr Smith and his wife Sallyanne, a nursery teacher, could see how close the top of the building was to their own home.

Mr Smith told Birmingham Live that he had raised concerns with the neighbour, who said they would 'sort it out,' but the problem was never resolved by the builders

Mr Smith told Birmingham Live that he had raised concerns with the neighbour, who said they would ‘sort it out,’ but the problem was never resolved by the builders

The extension, which was intended to add two bedrooms to the previously three-bed home, is now under investigation by Birmingham City Council

The extension, which was intended to add two bedrooms to the previously three-bed home, is now under investigation by Birmingham City Council

‘It looked very close, but you couldn’t see it properly as it was obscured a bit [by the scaffolding],’ he told Birmingham Live.

He described the construction work as having been ‘like a catalogue of errors right the way across.’

‘It’s come over the boundary on the same land – effectively you have two buildings occupying the same space,’ he said, adding that it will now be difficult to maintain his own property.  

‘We can never remove the gutters now, we can’t unfix the felt roof, or the fascias or render the side of the house. It’s like that permanently now and any problems we’ll have to live with.’

Mr Smith told Birmingham Live that he had raised concerns with the neighbour, who said they would ‘sort it out,’ but the problem was never resolved by the builders. 

‘They [the builders] didn’t actually realise their mistake until they started building underneath my eaves. It was only when they got so far up they realised my roof was in the way of them putting their own roof on. 

‘[The builders] didn’t fix it, they just worked around it, bodged it, recessed it in, built a little flat roof and built the roof to the side – Bizarre. 

Work on the neighbouring property is yet to be completed,  so Mr Smith is hopeful that the problem will be resolved before it continues

Work on the neighbouring property is yet to be completed,  so Mr Smith is hopeful that the problem will be resolved before it continues

The unexpected predicament has left Mr Smith, who moved into his home in 2017, feeling stressed and struggling to sleep

The unexpected predicament has left Mr Smith, who moved into his home in 2017, feeling stressed and struggling to sleep

The unexpected predicament has left Mr Smith, who moved into his home in 2017, feeling stressed and struggling to sleep, he said.

‘I feel absolutely awful over this. I try to push it to the back of my mind trying to forget about it – but then I don’t make any progress. 

‘So then I have to concentrate on it and it just winds me up. I have difficulty sleeping. It’s just very stressful. It’s a lot of worry. We bought the house as the house we wanted to live in forever. 

‘It’s just tainted this a bit now.’ 

Work on the neighbouring property is yet to be completed, Mr Smith told Birmingham Live, so he is hopeful that the problem will be resolved before it continues.   

‘It’s just going to save people money in the long run. The side wall needs rebuilding and moving and the roof needs taking off and putting on properly.

‘He’s going to have all sorts of problems with damp in the future and leaks.

‘I’m speaking to a solicitor, but it’s very slow going as we’re going through the building insurers.’  

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