Property Doctors: I can hear the neighbour's toilet through our party wall

Q We live in a Victorian terrace, where the houses are originally arranged with kitchen, bathroom etc adjacent along the party wall. Our new neighbours announced plans to demolish, extend and incorporate a cloakroom half way down the party wall in the original hallway.

I was assured by the architect and our party wall surveyor that adequate sound proofing would prevent us hearing the toilet in our living room.

Property Doctors: I can hear the neighbour's toilet through our party wall

Since the new neighbours arrived in October, we’ve heard coughs, sneezes, the toiler roll holder, flushes and taps running as if in with us. The last time this couple had a party it was like being next door to a public loo.

I have made complaints since August 2015, well before the builder left. Is there anything that can be done?

FS, Richmond

A Your first port of call should be with your party wall surveyor. Prior to your neighbour’s building work being carried out, your party wall surveyor should have made a schedule of conditions for your property and at the same time fully understood the works that are being carried out to the party wall.

From what you describe, it seems that either the soil stack has been partially chased into the party wall or that no insulation has been used between the properties. Your party wall surveyor has the right to inspect the completed construction work to the neighbour’s cloakroom and then report back to you.