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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

The Party Wall Act 1996

as it effects the garden

At first sight, it is simple to believe that the 1996 Party Wall Act does not impact garden construction, nevertheless it does impact the construction of limit walls even if not part of structures and can also applies to deep excavations.

The Party Wall Act 1996 came into force in 1997, so it is now law and gives you rights and responsibilities whichever the side of the ‘wall’ you are on i.e. whether you are planning/doing work on a pertinent structure or if your neighbour is.

The Party Wall Act does not apply to boundary fences.

The Party Wall Act does not impact any requirement for Planning Permission for any work carried out. Also, having Planning Authorization does not negate the requirements under the Party Wall Act.

The Party Wall Act enters into effect if somebody is planning to do work on a relevant structure, for the functions of the Act ‘party wall’ does not just indicate the wall in between two semi-detached homes, as far as garden enthusiasts are worried it covers:

For details of how the Party Wall Act impacts structure work in general, have a look at this page.

As with all work affecting neighbours, it is always much better to reach a friendly arrangement rather than turn to any law. Even where the work requires a notice to be served, it is much better to informally go over the intended work, think about the neighbours comments, and amend your strategies (if appropriate) before serving the notification.

What garden work requires a notification and approval.

The basic concept of the Party Wall Act is that all work which might have an impact upon the structural strength or support function of the party wall or may cause damage to the neighbouring side of the wall need to be notified. If in doubt, suggestions ought to be looked for from a regional Structure Control Workplace or professional surveyor/architect.

Operate in the garden covered by the Party Wall Act include:

Boundary walls

A notice should be provided to all affected neighbouring celebrations if the prepared work on a limit wall falls under the Party Wall Act. The notice should include (see sample letters in Part 5 of the Party Wall leaflet):.

If the prepared work is a new boundary wall up to or astride the limit line the process of serving a notification under the Party Wall Act is as follows:.

See listed below concerning what occurs in the event of a dispute/objection.

Excavations.

If the prepared work is an excavation within the distance/depth covered by the Party Wall Act, the notification requires to be served at least one month prior to the prepared start day of the work. Neighbouring parties need to give written agreement within 14 days or a dispute is considered to have occurred.

See below concerning what happens in the event of a dispute/objection.

What occurs if a disagreement emerges.

If arrangement can not be reached between neighbouring celebrations, the process is as follows:.

Once you have contract.

Once you have arrangement, all work needs to abide by the notice. All the agreements should be kept to make sure that a record of the granted permission is kept; a subsequent buyer of the residential or commercial property might wish to establish that the work was carried out in accordance with the Party Wall Act requirements.

Remember:

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