When to knock it down and start again  


Hi to all BISF members, I think this forum is invaluable to all BISF owners
I’ve been living in a BISF house for about 20 years now, and am now in a position to extend out a bit do some required insulating
One of the biggest dilemmas that I have is, is it worth it or shall I just knock it down and rebuild in brick?

Property is around 70 years old and sooner or later you or a furture owner will ponder the idea of starting again, so I want to start the ball rolling on this discussion point


  • Has anyone done ( or know of  someone who has done) a total rebuild, estimated costs, time?
  • Is it possible on a semi-detached without making enemies of your neighbour ?

Hello David, welcome to the forum and thank you for your kind comments.

I don't know of anyone personally who has chosen the demolition route, apart from local authorities and social housing groups. However, in these cases, both dwellings were always demolished together .

To date, I am not aware of any case or instance where frame division has occurred 

I suspect that planning consent would be very difficult to obtain due to the implications that frame division could on the neighbouring property. Such an action could weaken the neighbouring structure considerably either during or post construction, unless extensine structural reinforcements and supports were put in place.  Any such project would certainly require the constant input of an architect and structural engineer  which would add considerably to the cost.

From an engineering and architectural perspective, I see no reason why the dwelling could not be split, but  even if this was possible, I would suspect that you may also face a number of challenges from the neighbouring party and their legal team, especially if their property was subject to a mortgage.

Insurances and indemnity issues may also arise and possibly even costly legal challenges if the work was rejected by them or their lenders.

These are just a few of the thoughts that spring to mind.

If I were me in your situation, I would choose refurbishment everytime or even consider selling and investing in a detached property.

It would be great to hear other views and experiences though and it's certainly a thought provoking question.

To what degree were you thinking of extending?



Thanks for your valuable input.

As I love the area and don't want to move, looks like I'll be extending for now. My wooden lean-to is in pretty poor condition, so I wanted to replace it with a double storey self contained extension. Trying to find an architect now.


I'll be sure to update this forum with my progress



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