What is a Party Wall Award?
The process and requirements of a Party Wall Award are as set out in the Party Wall and so on. Act 1996. A Party Wall Award is a contract made between a minimum of two neighbouring occupiers prior to the commencement of construction/building work which is to be undertaken to a party border or structure, or where works are being undertaken in close proximity to a party limit or structure. There are 3 primary kinds of work which require a Party Wall Surveyor to conduct a Party Wall Award and these are:
- Line of junction (constructing a brand-new wall on or along with a limit).
- Party Structure Works (works to an existing party wall such as cutting into, rebuilding, thickening and so on).
- Adjacent Excavation (excavations to a lower level within either 3m or 6m of an existing structure).
In London and throughout the UK, our experienced commercial building surveyors perform a range of expert surveying services including Party Wall Studies (Party Wall Awards). At Commercial Structure Surveyors we perform Party Wall Studies by knowledgeable and expert Party Wall Surveyors throughout the UK.
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 believe that the 1996 Party Wall Act does not affect garden building, nevertheless it does impact the building of limit walls even if not part of buildings and can likewise applies to deep excavations.
The Party Wall Act 1996 entered into force in 1997, so it is now law and provides you rights and duties whichever the side of the ‘wall’ you are on i.e. whether you are planning/doing deal with a pertinent 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. Likewise, having Preparation Permission does not negate the requirements under the Party Wall Act.
The Party Wall Act enters into impact if somebody is preparing to do work on a pertinent structure, for the purposes of the Act ‘party wall’ does not simply imply the wall in between two semi-detached homes, 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 but is not part of any building.
- Excavation near to a neighbouring property.
For details of how the Party Wall Act impacts structure work in general, take a look at this page.
As with all work affecting neighbours, it is constantly better to reach a friendly contract instead of resort to any law. Even where the work needs a notification to be served, it is much better to informally go over the intended work, think about the neighbours comments, and modify your strategies (if proper) before serving the notice.
What garden work needs a notice and consent.
The basic principle of the Party Wall Act is that all work which might have an effect upon the structural strength or support function of the party wall or may trigger damage to the neighbouring side of the wall should be notified. If in doubt, guidance ought to be sought from a local Building Control Office or professional surveyor/architect.
Work in the garden covered by the Party Wall Act consist of:
- To demolish and/or rebuild/build a party border wall.
- To increase the height or density of a party boundary wall.
- Excavations within 3 metres of a neighbouring building where the excavation will go below the bottom of the foundations of the neighbouring structure.
- Excavations within 6 metres of a neighbouring building where the excavation will go listed below a line drawn 45 ° downwards from the bottom of the structures of the neighbouring structure.
If the prepared deal with a border wall falls under the Party Wall Act, a notification should be provided to all impacted neighbouring parties. The notice needs to consist of (see sample letters in Part 5 of the Party Wall leaflet):.
- The owners of the residential or commercial property carrying out the work.
- The address of the property.
- A full description of the proposed work (this will typically be just a single sentence outlining the work).
- The proposed start date for the work.
- A clear statement that the notification is being served under The Party Wall etc Act 1996.
- The date the notice is being served.
- If the work includes excavations, a drawing showing the depth, position etc
If the prepared work is a new limit wall as much as or astride the limit line the procedure of serving a notice under the Party Wall Act is as follows:.
- The individual intending to carry out the work must serve a written notice at least one months before 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 providing authorization or registering dissent – if a neighbouring party not does anything within 2 week of getting the notice, the result is to put the notice into disagreement. No formal agreement is needed for a wall up to the boundary line, the neighbour simply needs not to object in composing.
- No work might begin on a wall astride the border line till all neighbouring celebrations have concurred in writing to the notice (or a modified notification).
See listed below concerning what takes place 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 notification requires to be served at least one month prior to the prepared start day of the work. Neighbouring celebrations need to provide written arrangement within 14 days or a dispute is considered to have actually occurred.
See below regarding what takes place in case of a dispute/objection.
If a disagreement develops, what takes place.
If arrangement can not be reached in between neighbouring celebrations, the process is as follows:.
- A Surveyor or Surveyors is/are designated to figure out a objective and fair Award, either:.
- A single ‘Concurred Property surveyor’ (someone appropriate to all celebrations).
- Each party designates their own Surveyor to represent the private parties.
The person who is carrying out the work will normally have to pay all the costs of the Surveyors, the only exception being if the neighbour calls out a Property surveyor needlessly – in the opinion of the Surveyor. Nevertheless it needs to be kept in mind that any Surveyor needs to act within their statutory obligations and propose a neutral and fair Award.
- A single ‘Concurred Property surveyor’ (someone appropriate to all celebrations).
- The Agreed Property surveyor, or the individual Surveyors collectively, will produce an Award which must be impartial and reasonable to all parties.
- Once an Award has actually been made, all celebrations have 2 week to appeal to a County Court versus the Award.
Once you have arrangement.
All work should comply with the notification once you have contract. All the contracts ought to be kept to make sure that a record of the granted permission is kept; a subsequent purchaser of the home may want to establish that the work was performed in accordance with the Party Wall Act requirements.
Keep in mind:
- We have actually only offered a short overview of the Party Wall Act here as it affects garden work however have a look at the Communities and Local Government website for a more thorough explanatory booklet consisting of example letters for notices and reactions.
- If a notification gets here suddenly, discussing intended work with neighbours is complimentary and can avoid misunderstanding which may occur.
- Your regional Structure Control Workplace may have the ability to provide free suggestions relating to the Party Wall Act and how it applies to particular situations.
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