The Faulkners Surveyors is a professional Chartered Structure Surveying Practice that runs throughout UK. The Faulkners Surveyors carries out all elements of the Party Wall etc. Act 1996 and supplies the following services:
Objective guidance on all Party Wall Matters
Preparation and service of valid Party Wall Notices
Acting as Party Wall Property Surveyor for either Adjacent Owners or Structure Owners
Acting as the Agreed Party Wall Surveyor
Carrying Out Schedules of Condition studies
Preparation and settlement of Party Wall Awards (Contracts).
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 Act
The Party Wall etc. Act 1996 is an allowing Act, insofar as it grants the owner of a home the legal right to carry out specific works that may otherwise constitute trespass or annoyance.
It likewise seeks to secure the interests of adjacent owners from any potentially unfavorable results that such works may have by imposing a requirement that all adjacent owners be provided prior notice of them.
In addition, the Act provides for an obligatory dispute resolution treatment mediated by a statutorily selected property surveyor or property surveyors if neighbouring owners have concerns about the implementation of any proposition so notified.
Particularly, such notification should be served where the owner of a residential or commercial property (referred to as ‘the building owner’) plans to undertake any building work described in Areas 1, 2 and 6 of the Act. Note that it is only those works that are covered by the Act and the scope is limited to the following:
- Area 1 uses where it is proposed to put up a brand-new wall at a limit that is not currently built on.
- Section 2 concerns existing party structures, that include party floors, walls and partitions (that different buildings or parts of structures), party fence walls (essentially a border wall between lands in separate ownership which is constructed astride a limit) and, in some circumstances, a neighbour’s independent residential or commercial property.
- Section 6 can apply to excavations up to 6 m away from a structure or structure on neighbouring land, subject to depth requirements which the Act sets out.
The info that Observes should offer in respect of works covered the above areas is different in each case. The requirements of Area 1 and Section 6 Notifications are set out in those areas however the requirements of a Notification relating to Section 2 works is set out in Area 3 of the Act. It is necessary to keep in mind that the credibility of any notice not providing all the appropriate details or served in the inaccurate way, could be open to challenge in Court.
There is no basic type of Notification although many individuals utilize those published by the RICS or versions added to the explanatory pamphlet provided by the Department for Communities and Local Government. Supplied all the information required by the appropriate area of the Act is present, a basic letter would be similarly valid.
Depending on the scenarios of any offered task there may be more than one adjoining owner on whom observe needs to be served in regard of the exact same work and, when it comes to deep excavations, an Adjoining Owner might be aside from an instant neighbour. It is constantly more suitable to go over the desired works with adjacent owners before serving them with official written notice – a proposition well described may relieve concerns adequate to prevent a disagreement arising and avoid the necessity to select surveyors.
There are 2 exceptions where the requirement to serve notice might be avoided:
- De minimis works: The government’s explanatory brochure states that some works on a party wall might be so small that service of notification under the Act would be usually regarded as not necessary and give as examples works not likely to affect the structural strength or assistance functions of a party structure or cause damage to the neighbours side of it, such as re-plastering, shallow chasing for electrical circuitry or placing power sockets, and screws to support shelves, cooking area cupboards, and so forth.
- Functions under Area 2 of the Act supplied that written consent is acquired from all Adjacent Owners and Occupiers prior to work commences.
The 3 kinds of Notice are known, respectively as:
- Area 1: Line of Junction Notification
- Section 3 (for S2 works): Party Structure Notice
- Area 6: Notice of Adjacent Excavation
A party structure notice need to be served a minimum of 2 months prior to the date on which it is proposed to start that work. The other 2 notifications need to be served at least one month prior to work starting.
The mandatory info which Notices should consist of are as follows:
- Line of Junction Notice:
- A sign of the building owner’s desire to build a wall.
- A description of the wall.
- Party Structure Notice:
- The name and address of the building owner.
- The nature and details of the proposed work.
- The date on which the proposed work will start.
- Notice of Adjacent Excavation:
- An indicator of the building owner’s proposals.
- A declaration as to whether the building owner proposes to underpin or otherwise enhance or secure the structures of the building or structure of the adjoining owner.
- Accompanying plans and sections revealing: a) the site and depth of any excavation the structure owner proposes to make; b) if he proposes to put up a building or structure, its website.
Most of the pro-forma notifications in use include the following information as a matter of course regardless of the kind of notice:
- The date of the notification.
- If different), the name and addresses of both the building and adjacent owners (and the addresses of the properties being worked on/affected.
- A declaration regarding the start of works relative to the proper notification duration.
- If the recipient actively dissents from the works or stops working to respond within 14 days, an advisory note describing what occurs.
Section 10 of the Act stipulates that where an adjacent owner does not approval in writing to works informed by the structure owner under Sections 3 and 6, both celebrations must either agree on the appointment of a single property surveyor to act for both of them (referred to as the Agreed Surveyor), or each select their own surveyor, to determine by award matters in dispute in between the parties.
Where a job is straightforward, this may just include consideration of the time and manner in which those works are to be performed. In more complex schemes, thought will have to be provided to a commensurately greater number of aspects and indeed designated property surveyors have the statutory jurisdiction to make an award in regard of any matter gotten in touch with any work to which the act relates.
The exact same treatment is used to fix any subsequent conflicts in between neighbouring owners that might occur in relation to the notified works, including any loss or damage suffered by an adjoining owner as a result of their execution.
Inaction on the part of the adjacent owner does not halt the statutory procedure. A dispute can emerge by an adjacent owner actively dissenting, that is, communicating to the building owner an objection in regard of some matter developing out of or incidental to the works – the ways of making that objection are trivial, however if he stays quiet, neither consenting nor dissenting for a period of 14 days after having been served with a Notice under either Area 3 or Section 6, the Act deems a dissent to have arisen in any event.
There is no considered dissent arrangement in Section 1 of the Act. A legitimate disagreement can still emerge, and property surveyors be designated in accordance with Section 10, in regard of works alerted under that area but only as regards real dissent on particular premises. An adjacent owner’s reasons for disputing Section 2 and Section 6 works are rarely specified prior to the appointment of property surveyors and in a lot of cases not even then.
Where dissent has actually occurred, whether actual or considered, both owners are lawfully required to appoint a concurred surveyor or, if they can not jointly agree on a bachelor, a surveyor each and if asked for to make such a visit by the other party, should do so within 10 days of the request being served. Failure to comply, instantly gives the owner making the demand the statutory authority to select a surveyor on behalf of the recalcitrant party. This treatment is set out in section 10( 4) of the Act.
Where 2 property surveyors are appointed, they are obliged to agree upon the choice, in writing, of a 3rd property surveyor who might be hired by either of the surveyors or either of the parties to determine the disputed matters and make the needed award. The 3rd property surveyor is never selected by anybody however the Act gives the person so picked the exact same statutory powers as the two surveyors.
Third surveyors are most typically called upon where the two property surveyors have actually reached an impasse in their deliberations over some particular point and frequently this can be in regard on the reasonableness of the costs of the surveyor appointed by the adjacent owner. Seldom will a third surveyor be asked to draw up an award in respect of the entire works but may accompany one or other of the two surveyors to do so if the need develops.
There is no meaning of who can be a surveyor, but it ought to not be the same individual that will supervise the works.
The award will set out the works that can be carried out, who will pay the costs for the preparation of the award and assessment of the works to guarantee that they comply with the works, and who will pay for the works. They will usually be required to pay the costs and the expense of the works if the work is solely for the benefit of the building owner.
If they disagree with the award, parties have 14 days to appeal to the county court.
The Act enables access to the adjacent home for the functions of carrying out the works whether the adjoining owner gives permission or not, nevertheless they must be given 2 week notification.
NB: The introduction of The Party Wall and so on. Act 1996 (Electronic Communications) Order 2016 means that from 6 April 2016, notifications and other files can be served by electronic interactions.
The details that Observes should offer in respect of works covered the above sections is various in each case. The requirements of Section 1 and Section 6 Notices are set out in those sections but the requirements of a Notification relating to Area 2 works is set out in Section 3 of the Act. A valid dispute can still arise, and property surveyors be selected in accordance with Area 10, in respect of works alerted under that section however only as regards actual dissent on particular grounds. An adjacent owner’s factors for contesting Section 2 and Area 6 works are seldom specified prior to the consultation of property surveyors and in numerous cases not even then.
Where dissent has actually developed, whether actual or deemed, both owners are legally obliged to designate an agreed surveyor or, if they can not jointly agree on a single person, a surveyor each and if requested to make such a visit by the other party, need to do so within 10 days of the demand being served.
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