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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.
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 building and construction, nevertheless it does affect the building and construction of border walls even if not part of buildings and can likewise applies to deep excavations.
The Party Wall Act 1996 entered force in 1997, so it is now law and offers you rights and obligations whichever the side of the ‘wall’ you are on i.e. whether you are planning/doing work on a relevant structure or if your neighbour is.
The Party Wall Act does not apply to limit fences.
The Party Wall Act does not affect any requirement for Planning Permission for any work undertaken. Having Preparation Consent does not negate the requirements under the Party Wall Act.
The Party Wall Act enters effect if someone is preparing to do deal with an appropriate structure, for the purposes of the Act ‘party wall’ does not just suggest the wall in between two 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 residential or commercial properties however is not part of any building.
- Excavation close to a neighbouring residential or commercial property.
For details of how the Party Wall Act affects building operate in basic, have a look at this page.
Similar to all work impacting neighbours, it is always better to reach a friendly contract instead of resort to any law. Even where the work needs a notice to be served, it is better to informally go over the intended work, think about the neighbours comments, and modify your plans (if appropriate) prior to serving the notification.
What garden work needs a notice and consent.
The basic principle 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 might trigger damage to the neighbouring side of the wall should be notified. Guidance needs to be looked for from a local Structure Control Office or expert surveyor/architect if in doubt.
Operate in the garden covered by the Party Wall Act consist of:
- To destroy and/or rebuild/build a party border wall.
- To increase the height or thickness of a party boundary 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 structure where the excavation will go below a line drawn 45 ° downwards from the bottom of the foundations of the neighbouring building.
If the planned deal with a limit wall falls under the Party Wall Act, a notification should be issued to all affected neighbouring parties. The notification should include (see sample letters in Part 5 of the Party Wall brochure):.
- The owners of the property undertaking the work.
- The address of the residential or commercial property.
- A full description of the proposed work (this will generally be simply a single sentence outlining the work).
- The proposed start date for the work.
- A clear statement that the notice is being served under The Party Wall etc Act 1996.
- The date the notification is being served.
- If the work involves excavations, a drawing showing the depth, position and so on
If the prepared work is a brand-new boundary wall as much as or astride the border 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 written notification at least one months prior to the intended start of the work to every neighbouring party giving information of the work to be carried out.
- Each neighbouring party ought to respond in writing offering approval or signing up dissent – if a neighbouring party not does anything within 14 days of getting the notice, the impact is to put the notification into conflict. No official agreement is required for a wall up to the boundary line, the neighbour simply needs not to object in writing.
- No work might begin on a wall astride the limit line till all neighbouring celebrations have actually agreed in writing to the notification (or a revised notice).
See below concerning what happens in the event of a dispute/objection.
If the prepared work is an excavation within the distance/depth covered by the Party Wall Act, the notice needs to be served at least one month before the prepared start day of the work. Neighbouring parties should give written arrangement within 2 week or a conflict is deemed to have taken place.
See below regarding what takes place in case of a dispute/objection.
If a dispute emerges, what happens.
If agreement can not be reached in between neighbouring celebrations, the process is as follows:.
- A Surveyor or Surveyors is/are selected to figure out a impartial and fair Award, either:.
- A single ‘Agreed Property surveyor’ (someone acceptable to all celebrations).
- Each party designates their own Surveyor to represent the specific parties.
The individual who is performing the work will generally have to pay all the costs of the Surveyors, the only exception being if the neighbour calls out a Property surveyor unnecessarily – in the opinion of the Surveyor. It needs to be kept in mind that any Surveyor should act within their statutory duties and propose a impartial and fair Award.
- A single ‘Agreed Property surveyor’ (someone acceptable to all celebrations).
- The Agreed Surveyor, or the private Surveyors jointly, will produce an Award which needs to be unbiased and reasonable to all celebrations.
- As soon as an Award has actually been made, all parties have 14 days to appeal to a County Court versus the Award.
Once you have arrangement.
All work needs to comply with the notice when you have contract. All the agreements must be maintained to ensure that a record of the granted permission is kept; a subsequent purchaser of the property may wish to develop that the work was carried out in accordance with the Party Wall Act requirements.
- We have actually only offered a brief overview of the Party Wall Act here as it impacts garden work however have a look at the Neighborhoods and City government site for a more thorough explanatory booklet including example letters for responses and notices.
- Talking about intended deal with neighbours is complimentary and can avoid misconception which might develop if a notice arrives all of a sudden.
- Your regional Building Control Workplace may have the ability to offer totally free advice relating to the Party Wall Act and how it applies to particular scenarios.
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