A reader recently sent in the following query:
My neighbour built a granny flat on top of their garage (prior to my purchase, but building was completed thereafter) and with the relaxed boundary is literally 30 to 40 cms from my property. The roof has a central apex but there is no guttering on the side adjacent to my property. I would appreciate your advice regarding this – surely a roof requires gutters?
Les Abbott, our Technical Advisor, responds as follows:
The National Building Regulations (SABS 0400 - 1990 Part R) does not specify that gutters are a requirement in any building BUT, where there are no gutters provided, there needs to be provision by the owner to adequately control the flow of rainwater from any building and ensure that it flows away from such a building.
If the owner is not able to achieve this without installing gutters, then gutters must be installed and the flow of water controlled in this way.
I would suggest that you consult your local building inspector as there are often municipal by-laws (over and above SABS 0400) that deal with such issues at a local level. A further point is that you could look at the architect’s plan would have been approved by the municipality with gutters specified, in which case they should be installed, or approved without gutters but showing an alternative method of controlling the flow of rainwater. If they have been specified, then it should be a matter of requesting your neighbour to install them given the problem that you are having.