Party wall arrangements are an aspect of expanding and also renovating you may require to know about. Overwhelmed by the legalities? Professional home renovator Michael Holmes explains what is included and the regulations of the Party Wall Act

Party wall arrangements are something you need to find out about it you’re preparing an extension or renovation alongside an adjacent residential homes in England or Wales. 

A party wall arrangement generally includes:

Party Wall Act 1996 is designed to assist you undertake job– giving access to neighbouring homes– while safeguarding the interests of your next-door neighbours.

Various other products covered consist of:

The arrangement will usually be based upon a draft paper, one of the most preferred of which is typically done by the RICS, which is then changed according to the details of the specific work. It must clearly mention information of both residential or commercial properties, their owners, as well as their owners’ addresses. It ought to also have full details of both surveyors (or agreed land surveyor) as well as the “Third Surveyor” (if an “concurred property surveyor” is made use of there will undoubtedly be no 3rd Surveyor).

Any structure services your property that influences a common wall may need a Party Wall Agreement.

A Party Wall Agreement might be required:

Party wall structure works: getting authorization

As the homeowner (‘Structure Proprietor’) that intends to perform the job, you need a written Party Wall Agreement from any neighbours (‘Adjoining Proprietors’) who are affected. All influenced next-door neighbours should get a Party Wall Notification.

Additionally, you can employ a land surveyor to develop a Party Wall Award – which will undoubtedly information the planned jobs.

Functions can not begin till the necessary Party Wall Agreement has been developed – and consented to.

When does party wall act apply

The Act came into effect 1 July 1997 and applied throughout England and Wales.

It provides a framework for avoiding and fixing disputes concerning party walls, limit wall surfaces and excavations near adjoining structures. It is based around proven provisions of the London Structure Acts, which applied in inner London for numerous decades before the Act entered into force.

Anyone intending to accomplish job (anywhere in England as well as Wales) of the kinds defined in the Act needs to give Adjoining Owners notification of their purposes.

Where the desired job is to an existing party wall (area 2 of the Act), a notification must be provided even where the job will not extend past the centerline of a party wall.

It is frequently useful in recognizing the principles of the Act if proprietors consider themselves joint owners of the entire of a party wall rather than the single owner of half or part of it.

Adjacent Owners can agree with the Structure Proprietor’s proposals or reach an agreement with the Building Proprietor on changes in the way the jobs are to be executed as well as in their timing. Where there is no written permission or arrangement, the Act attends to the resolution of ‘disagreements’.

Do I really need a Party Wall Agreement for smaller jobs?

If you only intend to re-point a wall surface, fixing flashing or place a moist evidence course, you might feel that a Party Wall Agreement or Award is unneeded. However, one ought to theoretically be offered.


A neighbour is asked to react within 14 days of obtaining the notification. After this duration, one of three circumstances will undoubtedly occur, which must be clearly outlined in the Notice.

1: Assent is given in writing by the neighbour, presuming any future concerns (damages, etc.) are dealt with by the House owner.

In this well-defined scenario, hiring a party wall property surveyor or organizing a Party Wall Award is not required. Dated photos is suggested to be be taken of the party wall by the Homeowner, highlighting any splits or damages. Copies need to be supplied to the afflicted Adjoining Owners.

Some Homeowners choose to decrease the threat of any later disagreements by working with a property surveyor right before works start. They will note any kind of essential information concerning the wall surface – damage, and so on.


2: If an Adjacent Proprietor does not agree to the Notice, after that they are claimed to have dissented. In this case, a Party Wall Honour is required. (It’s worth noting that if they fall short to react within 14 days, dissent is thought from a legal perspective and an Honour is still called for).

A solitary land surveyor can then be appointed by both the Homeowner as well as the Adjoining Proprietor. This property surveyor is chosen to act impartially for both parties – for that reason a Property owner should not pick the same surveyor used for the jobs, as the Adjoining Owner could consider it a problem of rate of interests.

A Party Wall Award is produced by the Agreed Property surveyor, providing information of the recommended works, along with a ‘timetable of problem’, which would consist of relevant pictures.

3: One more opportunity in the event of dissent is that both parties then pick their property surveyor. This option is two times as expensive for the Property owner, as they are responsible for both land surveyor fees.