Can you raise the ridge line within 150mm threshold in PD or does it need planning permission?

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You've got several parties involved, and this makes it more difficult (ie more onerous on you) to prove who owed a duty to who, and thus prove breach of contract.

Well ultimately I guess the loft conversion company owes the duty to me to ensure the loft is converted within permitted development as they said it would be. If they sought advice from a 3rd party, then that's up to them to deal with I would assume
 
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What the OP should do, is notify the designer, the builder and the engineer
But would the engineer be liable? - as far as we know, he was not involved in advising the client and only did the number crunching for a beam.
 
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But would the engineer be liable? - as far as we know, he was not involved in advising the client and only did the number crunching for a beam.

The engineer is the same guy who was the architect and the same guy who did the building regs checks. He's a 3rd party one man band that the loft company used.

It was that guy who said they can raise the ridge height as long as it's under 150mm under permitted development.

So the loft company paid him for his expert advice and he failed them. But I didn't hire him, I hired the loft company so my issue is with them, if they paid a 3rd party to give them dodgy info, then that's their problem with him
 
L

Leofric

Well ultimately I guess the loft conversion company owes the duty to me to ensure the loft is converted within permitted development as they said it would be. If they sought advice from a 3rd party, then that's up to them to deal with I would assume
I would agree with that, your contract is with the loft company and the problem was created by the builder, who is the loft company, installing the steel beam at the wrong level; so the loft company is responsible for obtaining planning permission for the deviation from the original scheme which came under permitted development , and rectifying the building work if planning permission is refused. That is how I see it anyway, but your solicitor would have to advise how you cover yourself , you need something in writing to and from the loft company in the first instance .
 
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Anyone in that area of construction ie. working on roofs
in one way or another knows that you cannot higher the
ridge height full stop, without it potentionally being a BIG problem. The fact that they are lying to you is worrying and I suspect as soon as you pay them they will stop answering your calls. it will cost you a few thousand to get the beam lowered if it comes to that.
 
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Anyone in that area of construction ie. working on roofs
in one way or another knows that you cannot higher the
ridge height full stop, without it potentionally being a BIG problem. The fact that they are lying to you is worrying and I suspect as soon as you pay them they will stop answering your calls. it will cost you a few thousand to get the beam lowered if it comes to that.

Yeah for a company that claims to have decades of experience in loft conversions you would think they would have learned the regulations along the way.

I've literally only looked at the regs once (the other day) and it seems clear as day to me you can't increase the ridge height.

They must have known they were doing something dodgy because when I questioned it, they bombarded me with facts and rules and other jobs what they have done similar things on.

I really should have checked with the council straight away, but they told me they would submit all the evidence to the council and get them to clear it as permitted development. I had no reason not to trust them, I mean if you hire a professional you expect to be able to trust what they tell you.

It wasn't until i received the final cert and there was no mention of this roof extension I checked with the council. I'm glad I did though (no matter what anyone says otherwise on here) because as you say, if I had made the final payment they would have been long gone. Right now I've got them clearly in the wrong, and if they have been doing this on other properties, then how many poor saps are out there with unlawful development because of them?!
 
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I would agree with that, your contract is with the loft company and the problem was created by the builder, who is the loft company, installing the steel beam at the wrong level; so the loft company is responsible for obtaining planning permission for the deviation from the original scheme which came under permitted development , and rectifying the building work if planning permission is refused. That is how I see it anyway, but your solicitor would have to advise how you cover yourself , you need something in writing to and from the loft company in the first instance .

The really annoying thing about all of it, is they installed it too high because they installed huge 9x3 floor joists which brought the floor up massively. The loft was about 2.79m (truss style) originally, and now the final height is about 2.05m including increase in ridge height.
 
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But would the engineer be liable? - as far as we know, he was not involved in advising the client and only did the number crunching for a beam.
The OP has confirmed that the engineer is the architect, but supposing he was separate ...

The engineer had designed a beam that was too deep and has caused the roof to be raised, so the builder blames him. That's the normal blame game.

But there are factors that we are not aware of, so yes it may be nothing to do with the engineer, or there may be partial negligence. It all depends on his instruction.
 
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I suggest you tell them that until you have a lawful cert for the work you will be holding back the final payment, because if you come to sell it will have implications.
 
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@op; what size ridge beam has the SE specified, and what is the span of the beam?
If you started with a height of 2.79m, and now end up with 2.05, that is a hell of a lot to loose for the floor and ridge/roof.
Did they put the floor joists between or above the bottom chord of the trusses?
Does your house have no load-bearing walls at first floor?
 
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I suggest you tell them that until you have a lawful cert for the work you will be holding back the final payment, because if you come to sell it will have implications.


That was exactly my point, if we try and sell at any point and someone (by chance or by diligence) notices the raised ridge then we're in for a rough ride and if we sell in like 2 years time for example, then this builder will be long gone and claiming it's nothing to do with him, which is why I felt I can't stay quiet about it.
 
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@op; what size ridge beam has the SE specified, and what is the span of the beam?
If you started with a height of 2.79m, and now end up with 2.05, that is a hell of a lot to loose for the floor and ridge/roof.
Did they put the floor joists between or above the bottom chord of the trusses?
Does your house have no load-bearing walls at first floor?

The Ridge beam has got to be about 20cm-25cm wide and probably the same height (I've attached the best photo I can find)

The span is about 7.8metres onto the brick work.

The floor joists are hung off the floor steels and are just above the original ceiling joists.

They told me the first floor was just thermalite breeze blocks and the ground floor was the only load bearing wall, which is why the steel needed to go in.

I mean that all sounds reasonable to me, so no reason for me to question it.
 

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The beam is then probably one of the 254mm x 254mm sections which is done in several different weights per metre; probably the optimum section-size for a 7.8m span gable-to-gable.
For the floor beams, it is customary to get them as low down as possible between the existing ceiling joists (Strictly not ceiling joists but rather what would have been the bottom members of the trusses). The joists are then supported by hangers off steel beams each side running gable-to-gable.
Is yours a detached house by chance? If so, would anyone have actually noticed a i50mm difference in height?
 
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The beam is then probably one of the 254mm x 254mm sections which is done in several different weights per metre; probably the optimum section-size for a 7.8m span gable-to-gable.
For the floor beams, it is customary to get them as low down as possible between the existing ceiling joists (Strictly not ceiling joists but rather what would have been the bottom members of the trusses). The joists are then supported by hangers off steel beams each side running gable-to-gable.
Is yours a detached house by chance? If so, would anyone have actually noticed a i50mm difference in height?

It is detached and funnily enough the neighbour noticed straight away, they didn't say anything negative about it, but as soon as it was done they said "oh I see they put your roof up a bit"
 
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So the latest is the builder and architect now agree it's not permitted development but say it's so inconsequential the council wouldn't enforce it to be changed and I should pay them.

I've replied to them to say if they can get a certificate of lawfulness then I'll pay, just because a council wouldn't enforce action doesn't mean the unlawful build wouldn't cause problems such as selling the property.
 

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