Devon Mansions

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Friday 2 November 2012 4.25pm
Hi,

I've been renting in SE1 for 5 years and I'm looking at buying a flat in Devon Mansions.

I know a few people on the forum live there and I wondered if anyone can tell me what they think it's like living there?

Also I've heard that there might be some noise issues, with the walls/floors not being very soundproof. Is this the case? Normally those Victorian buildings are very good for soundproofing, so I would have thought it would be ok...

Any insight much appreciated!
Friday 2 November 2012 10.26pm
hi,
have been renting here for a few months, have a 3 floor flat facing tooley St. Love it walls no problem with soundproofing but (i) noise through cealing a problem ( not sure if upstairs have floorboards but did not put underlay down (ii) noise from vehicles on the road a real issue
Saturday 3 November 2012 12.58pm
I was living in Devon mansions at the time they were "soundproofed" it was a nightmare before the works,I wont bother you with the sort of things one heard but it was pretty clear.
It was one man that took SC on and won although he seemed to ruin his life doing so and became a shadow of the man he was.
Fortunes were spent,carpets ripped up and replaced and the difference/improvement was noticeable but still were very noisey (for me at least)
I occasionally visit a friend still living there and he loves it but I am reminded of the clumping footsteps from above and they have carpets!
Not for me although it has to be said I am a little noise sensitive.
Great area to live though.
Sunday 4 November 2012 10.50am
I live in Devon Mansions too, and I love the place. However noise is a real problem. We can hear our neighbour upstairs stomping around all day, and moving/dropping heavy items, plus a kid running back and forth. We can occasionally hear TV noise too.

We're also in the middle of a claim with the council after shoddy plumbing in the flat above caused a major leak in our kitchen roof....
Sunday 4 November 2012 12.02pm
We had a thread on sound-proofing some ways down the road.

It will always be a problem in older flats given the wooden floors and joists; part of the solution is to fill the gaps between floor joists as it is this pocket of air which carries the sound (think of an acoustic guitar), however in itself this is not enough to ensure peace and quiet. Unless you also include a membrane to isolate the floorboards from the joists, these will still act as resonators. Soundproofing is a complex business:

http://www.soundstop.co.uk/solutions/floor_access/floor_access_comparison.php

The more practical solution is your neighbour having carpets and not wearing shoes about the house and no kids of course!
Sunday 4 November 2012 2.08pm
Nat, My friend had the EXACT same thing with leaks into his kitchen from above after works carried out by the above landlord,I thought you was him for a minute until I realised there were no kids above.

Tolstoy, these old places have lovely high ceilings,i'm now a peabody dweller and they have put a false ceiling in with some kind of soundproofing involved,does make a difference and the ceilings are still more then adequately high.
In Devon mansions all they did was lay felted boards directly onto the existing flooring.
Sunday 4 November 2012 5.43pm
boroughonian wrote:
Nat, My friend had the EXACT same thing with leaks into his kitchen from above after works carried out by the above landlord,I thought you was him for a minute until I realised there were no kids above.
Tolstoy, these old places have lovely high ceilings,i'm now a peabody dweller and they have put a false ceiling in with some kind of soundproofing involved,does make a difference and the ceilings are still more then adequately high.
In Devon mansions all they did was lay felted boards directly onto the existing flooring.

Really?? That's interesting to know. I've been in touch with Southwark Council about how slow they've been at repairing the roof/fixing the problem. How long did it take your friend to have his repaired? I think there might be a wider plumbing problem with the entire building, or at least the above flat (which is a council rent).
Sunday 4 November 2012 6.52pm
He complained to the landlady of above flat (once he tracked her down)and was reimbersed by her or her insurers I think,slightly different situation in so much that both flats are private but that's not to say the works weren't carried out by council plumbers.
The problem was only rectified after he made threats of taking matters further,surely in your case the council are liable for any damage to your kitchen ceiling etc.
Monday 5 November 2012 9.53am
Thanks everyone, really helpful to hear from people in the know! I'm going to go look at the flat today and I'll ask the current tenants about sound issues. If it's a noisy flat then I don't think it's for me...

If I wanted to, could I pay for the ceiling to be soundproofed myself? Or would the council have an issue with that?
Monday 5 November 2012 9.54am
boroughonian wrote:
He complained to the landlady of above flat (once he tracked her down)and was reimbersed by her or her insurers I think,slightly different situation in so much that both flats are private but that's not to say the works weren't carried out by council plumbers.
The problem was only rectified after he made threats of taking matters further,surely in your case the council are liable for any damage to your kitchen ceiling etc.

Yes the council are liable, but extremely slow at doing anything. I was passed around by customer services 3 times, encountering many rather rude receptionists, before being told that it was being handled by loss adjusters and I would need to get in touch with them. The first loss adjusters went bust, the new team haven't a clue about the problem and keep getting the address wrong. Nightmare!
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