Faulkners Surveyors is an independent firm of structure property surveyors that specialise in the
Party Wall and so on. Act 1996 acting for Building Owners, Adjacent Owners and as the Agreed Property Surveyor throughout London and the House Counties.
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.
The Party Wall Act 1996
as it impacts the garden
At first sight, it is simple to think that the 1996 Party Wall Act does not impact garden construction, however it does impact the building and construction of limit walls even if not part of structures and can likewise applies to deep excavations.
The Party Wall Act 1996 entered force in 1997, so it is now law and provides you rights and obligations whichever the side of the ‘wall’ you are on i.e. whether you are planning/doing work on an appropriate structure or if your neighbour is.
The Party Wall Act does not apply to border fences.
The Party Wall Act does not affect any requirement for Planning Consent for any work undertaken. Having Preparation Permission does not negate the requirements under the Party Wall Act.
The Party Wall Act enters into result if somebody is planning to do deal with a pertinent structure, for the functions of the Act ‘party wall’ does not simply mean the wall in between 2 semi-detached properties, as far as garden enthusiasts are worried it covers:
- A garden wall, where the wall is astride the limit line (or butts up against it) and is utilized to separate the homes but is not part of any building.
- Excavation near to a neighbouring property.
For details of how the Party Wall Act affects structure operate in general, take a look at this page.
Just like all work impacting neighbours, it is always much better to reach a friendly contract rather than resort to any law. Even where the work requires a notification to be served, it is better to informally go over the desired work, consider the neighbours comments, and amend your plans (if proper) prior to serving the notification.
What garden work requires a notice and approval.
The general concept of the Party Wall Act is that all work which might have a result upon the structural strength or assistance function of the party wall or may trigger damage to the neighbouring side of the wall need to be notified. Guidance ought to be sought from a local Building Control Office or expert surveyor/architect if in doubt.
Work in the garden covered by the Party Wall Act consist of:
- To rebuild/build a party and/or demolish border wall.
- To increase the height or thickness of a party border wall.
- Excavations within 3 metres of a neighbouring building where the excavation will go below the bottom of the structures of the neighbouring building.
- Excavations within 6 metres of a neighbouring building where the excavation will go below a line drawn 45 ° downwards from the bottom of the structures of the neighbouring building.
If the prepared work on a limit wall falls under the Party Wall Act, a notification must be issued to all impacted neighbouring celebrations. The notification should include (see sample letters in Part 5 of the Party Wall brochure):.
- The owners of the home carrying out the work.
- The address of the home.
- A complete description of the proposed work (this will usually be simply a single sentence describing the work).
- The proposed start date for the work.
- A clear declaration that the notification is being served under The Party Wall etc Act 1996.
- The date the notification is being served.
- If the work involves excavations, a drawing revealing the depth, position etc
If the planned work is a new border wall approximately or astride the boundary line the procedure of serving a notification under the Party Wall Act is as follows:.
- The person intending to perform the work should serve a composed notification at least one months prior to the desired start of the work to every neighbouring party offering details of the work to be carried out.
- Each neighbouring party must respond in composing giving permission or signing up dissent – if a neighbouring party not does anything within 2 week of receiving the notice, the effect is to put the notice into disagreement. No official contract is needed for a wall up to the border line, the neighbour just requires not to object in composing.
- No work might start on a wall astride the limit line until all neighbouring celebrations have agreed in writing to the notice (or a revised notification).
See listed below regarding what occurs in case of a dispute/objection.
If the planned work is an excavation within the distance/depth covered by the Party Wall Act, the notice needs to be served a minimum of one month before the prepared start day of the work. Neighbouring celebrations should give written contract within 14 days or a disagreement is deemed to have actually taken place.
See listed below concerning what happens in case of a dispute/objection.
What takes place if a conflict arises.
If agreement can not be reached in between neighbouring parties, the process is as follows:.
- A Surveyor or Surveyors is/are designated to determine a unbiased and fair Award, either:.
- A single ‘Agreed Property surveyor’ (somebody acceptable to all parties).
- Each party selects their own Property surveyor to represent the specific celebrations.
The person who is carrying out the work will normally need to pay all the expenses of the Surveyors, the only exception being if the neighbour calls out a Surveyor unnecessarily – in the opinion of the Property surveyor. It must be noted that any Surveyor should act within their statutory duties and propose a unbiased and reasonable Award.
- A single ‘Agreed Property surveyor’ (somebody acceptable to all parties).
- The Agreed Surveyor, or the specific Surveyors collectively, will produce an Award which needs to be neutral and reasonable to all parties.
- When an Award has been made, all celebrations have 14 days to appeal to a County Court versus the Award.
As soon as you have contract.
All work must comply with the notification once you have contract. All the contracts ought to be kept to guarantee that a record of the granted permission is kept; a subsequent purchaser of the home might want to develop that the work was performed in accordance with the Party Wall Act requirements.
Keep in mind:
- We have actually just provided a short outline of the Party Wall Act here as it impacts garden work but have a look at the Neighborhoods and Local Government website for a more thorough explanatory brochure including example letters for reactions and notifications.
- If a notification shows up unexpectedly, going over designated work with neighbours is complimentary and can avoid misunderstanding which may occur.
- Your local Building Control Workplace might be able to provide totally free guidance concerning the Party Wall Act and how it applies to particular situations.
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