Faulkners Surveyors As certified and experienced Party Wall Surveyors we specialise in all Party Wall matters.
We cover every aspect required to advise upon and deal with Party Wall problems, such as:
- Preparing and serving legitimate Party Wall Notices
- Acting as the Structure Owners Party Wall Property Surveyor
- Acting as the Adjoining Owners Party Wall Property Surveyor
- Acting as the Agreed Party Wall Property Surveyor
- Carrying out and preparing Schedules of Condition
- Preparation and settlement of Party Wall Awards
All our Party Wall Surveyors are experts and work in accordance with the regulations set down by the Professors of Party Wall Surveyors.
The Party Wall Act etc. 1996 is law, failure to abide by this legislation may lead to works being illegal.
Party Wall (WikiPedia)
A party wall (occasionally parti-wall or parting wall, also known as common wall or as a demising wall) is a dividing partition between two adjoining buildings that is shared by the occupants of each residence or business. Typically, the builder lays the wall along a property line dividing two terraced houses, so that one half of the wall’s thickness lies on each side. This type of wall is usually structural. Party walls can also be formed by two abutting walls built at different times. The term can be also used to describe a division between separate units within a multi-unit apartment complex. Very often the wall in this case is non-structural but designed to meet established criteria for sound and/or fire protection, i.e. a firewall.
Party Wall Act
The Party Wall etc. Act 1996 is an enabling Act, insofar as it grants the owner of a home the legal right to carry out specific works that may otherwise make up trespass or annoyance.
Nevertheless, it likewise seeks to secure the interests of adjoining owners from any potentially unfavorable effects that such works might have by imposing a requirement that all adjoining owners be given prior notification of them.
In addition, the Act provides for an obligatory conflict resolution treatment moderated by a statutorily designated surveyor or property surveyors if neighbouring owners have concerns about the application of any proposition so notified.
Particularly, such notification should be served where the owner of a home (known as ‘the structure owner’) intends to undertake any building and construction work explained in Areas 1, 2 and 6 of the Act. Note that it is only those works that are covered by the Act and the scope is limited to the following:
- Area 1 applies where it is proposed to erect a new wall at a boundary that is not currently built on.
- Area 2 issues existing party structures, which include party floorings, walls and partitions (that separate buildings or parts of buildings), party fence walls (essentially a limit wall between lands in separate ownership which is developed astride a limit) and, in some circumstances, a neighbour’s independent home.
- Section 6 can apply to excavations approximately 6 m far from a structure or structure on neighbouring land, subject to depth criteria which the Act sets out.
The info that Observes should supply in regard of works covered the above sections is various in each case. The requirements of Area 1 and Section 6 Notifications are set out in those sections but the requirements of a Notice connecting to Section 2 works is set out in Area 3 of the Act. It is essential to keep in mind that the validity of any notification not supplying all the relevant information or served in the inaccurate manner, could be available to challenge in Court.
There is no basic form of Notice although many individuals utilize those released by the RICS or versions added to the explanatory booklet provided by the Department for Communities and City Government. However, offered all the info needed by the appropriate section of the Act is present, a simple letter would be similarly legitimate.
Depending upon the situations of any offered task there may be more than one adjoining owner on whom observe requirements to be served in regard of the very same work and, when it comes to deep excavations, an Adjoining Owner might be other than an immediate neighbour. It is constantly more suitable to go over the intended works with adjoining owners prior to serving them with formal composed notice – a proposal well discussed might reduce issues sufficient to prevent a dispute emerging and avoid the necessity to designate property surveyors.
There are 2 exceptions where the requirement to serve notice may be avoided:
- De minimis works: The federal government’s explanatory pamphlet states that some deal with a party wall may be so small that service of notice under the Act would be normally considered not needed and give as examples works not likely to affect the structural strength or support functions of a party structure or cause damage to the neighbours side of it, such as re-plastering, shallow chasing for electrical wiring or inserting power sockets, and screws to support shelves, kitchen area cabinets, and so on.
- Functions under Area 2 of the Act provided that written authorization is gotten from all Adjoining Owners and Occupiers before work commences.
The 3 types of Notification are understood, respectively as:
- Area 1: Line of Junction Notification
- Area 3 (for S2 works): Party Structure Notification
- Section 6: Notification of Adjacent Excavation
A party structure notice need to be served a minimum of 2 months prior to the date on which it is proposed to start that work. The other two notifications should be served a minimum of one month prior to work starting.
The necessary details which Sees need to consist of are as follows:
- Line of Junction Notice:
- An indicator of the building owner’s desire to construct a wall.
- A description of the wall.
- Party Structure Notice:
- The name and address of the building owner.
- The nature and details of the proposed work.
- The date on which the proposed work will start.
- Notice of Adjacent Excavation:
- An indicator of the structure owner’s propositions.
- A declaration regarding whether or not the structure owner proposes to underpin or otherwise strengthen or protect the foundations of the building or structure of the adjoining owner.
- Accompanying sections and plans showing: a) the website and depth of any excavation the building owner proposes to make; b) if he proposes to set up a structure or structure, its site.
The majority of the pro-forma notices in use consist of the following information as a matter of course regardless of the kind of notice:
- The date of the notification.
- If different), the name and addresses of both the structure and adjacent owners (and the addresses of the homes being worked on/affected.
- A declaration as to the start of works relative to the appropriate notice period.
- An advisory note discussing what happens if the recipient actively dissents from the works or stops working to respond within 2 week.
Area 10 of the Act specifies that where an adjacent owner does not authorization in writing to works notified by the structure owner under Sections 3 and 6, both celebrations should either agree on the consultation of a single property surveyor to act for both of them (called the Agreed Property Surveyor), or each appoint their own surveyor, to figure out by award matters in dispute between the parties.
Where a job is straightforward, this may just include consideration of the time and way in which those works are to be carried out. In more complex schemes, thought will need to be offered to a commensurately greater number of aspects and undoubtedly appointed surveyors have the statutory jurisdiction to make an award in regard of any matter connected with any work to which the act relates.
The same procedure is utilized to fix any subsequent disagreements in between neighbouring owners that might arise in relation to the informed works, consisting of any loss or damage suffered by an adjacent owner as a result of their execution.
Inactiveness on the part of the adjoining owner does not halt the statutory procedure. A dispute can arise by an adjacent owner actively dissenting, that is, interacting to the structure owner an objection in regard of some matter emerging out of or incidental to the works – the means of making that objection are trivial, but if he remains quiet, neither dissenting nor consenting for a duration of 2 week after having actually been served with a Notice under either Section 3 or Section 6, the Act considers a dissent to have emerged in any event.
There is no deemed dissent arrangement in Section 1 of the Act. A legitimate disagreement can still arise, and property surveyors be selected in accordance with Section 10, in respect of works alerted under that section however just as relates to actual dissent on specific premises. An adjacent owner’s factors for contesting Area 2 and Section 6 works are rarely specified prior to the visit of property surveyors and in a lot of cases not even then.
Where dissent has developed, whether real or considered, both owners are legally required to designate a concurred property surveyor or, if they can not collectively agree on a single person, a property surveyor each and if requested to make such an appointment by the other party, need to do so within 10 days of the demand being served. Failure to comply, instantly provides the owner making the demand the statutory authority to appoint a surveyor on behalf of the recalcitrant party. This treatment is set out in section 10( 4) of the Act.
Where 2 surveyors are appointed, they are obliged to agree upon the selection, in composing, of a third surveyor who might be called upon by either of the property surveyors or either of the parties to identify the contested matters and make the required award. The third property surveyor is never ever selected by anybody however the Act gives the person so picked the same statutory powers as the two property surveyors.
3rd property surveyors are most commonly hired where the two property surveyors have actually reached an impasse in their considerations over some specific point and often this can be in regard on the reasonableness of the fees of the property surveyor appointed by the adjoining owner. Hardly ever will a third property surveyor be asked to prepare an award in respect of the entire works however may join with one or other of the two property surveyors to do so if the requirement occurs.
There is no definition of who can be a surveyor, however it should not be the same person that will supervise the works.
The award will set out the works that can be carried out, who will pay the costs for the preparation of the award and examination of the works to ensure that they abide by the works, and who will pay for the works. They will generally be required to pay the costs and the cost of the works if the work is entirely for the advantage of the structure owner.
If they disagree with the award, celebrations have 14 days to appeal to the county court.
The Act permits access to the adjacent home for the purposes of performing the works whether the adjacent owner permits or not, however they need to be given 14 days notice.
NB: The introduction of The Party Wall and so on. Act 1996 (Electronic Communications) Order 2016 indicates that from 6 April 2016, notices and other documents can be served by electronic communications.
The info that Observes need to offer in respect of works covered the above sections is various in each case. The requirements of Area 1 and Section 6 Notifications are set out in those sections but the requirements of a Notice relating to Area 2 works is set out in Area 3 of the Act. A legitimate conflict can still arise, and property surveyors be appointed in accordance with Section 10, in regard of works alerted under that area however only as concerns actual dissent on particular premises. An adjoining owner’s factors for contesting Section 2 and Section 6 works are hardly ever specified prior to the consultation of surveyors and in many cases not even then.
Where dissent has developed, whether real or considered, both owners are legally required to designate an agreed surveyor or, if they can not jointly concur on a single individual, a surveyor each and if asked for to make such an appointment by the other party, should do so within 10 days of the request being served.
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