What is a Party Wall Award?
A Party Wall Award is a contract made in between at least two neighbouring occupiers prior to the commencement of construction/building work which is to be undertaken to a party limit or structure, or where works are being carried out in close proximity to a party limit or structure. There are three primary types of work which need a Party Wall Property surveyor to conduct a Party Wall Award and these are:
- Line of junction (building a new wall on or alongside a border).
- Party Structure Works (works to an existing party wall such as cutting into, reconstructing, thickening and so on).
- Surrounding Excavation (excavations to a lower level within either 3m or 6m of an existing structure).
In London and across the UK, our experienced business building property surveyors perform a variety of expert surveying services including Party Wall Surveys (Party Wall Awards). At Commercial Building Surveyors we carry out Party Wall Studies by expert and skilled 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.
How The Party Wall etc.
In simplified terms, the Party Wall and so on. If the Adjoining Owners are satisfied that the Building Owners’ proposed works will be of no inconvenience or, pose no risk of damage to their property, the Adjoining Owners only need to confirm, in writing, that they consent to the works and the Party Wall and so on. The 2nd stage would just be triggered if the Adjacent Owners had any issues relating to the Structure Owners’ proposals or picked to ignore the Notice served by the Structure Owners.
A conflict would then be deemed to have emerged and, the framework provided by the Party Wall and so on. At the point of a “disagreement” having arisen, both the Building Owners and the Adjacent Owners have to select a Party Wall Surveyor to proceed with fixing the disagreement.
Prior to any disagreement occurring, Structure Owners and Adjoining Owners do not necessarily need the services of a Party Wall Property Surveyor. The Party Wall Business are frequently commissioned to offer guidance on the Act and to serve the appropriate Party Wall Notices, ensuring they are lawfully valid.
What is a Party Wall Notification?
Structure Owners planning to perform any of the works specified within the Party Wall etc. Act 1996 have a legal commitment to serve written Notification on any Adjoining Owner who may be impacted by the Structure Owners proposed works. There is no main template for a Notification. Adequate information of the proposed works, legal names of all Owners, and when the proposed works will begin are all critical to make sure the validity of the Notification.
The case of Lehmann vs Herman (1993) reveals the significance of serving a valid Notice. Mr and Mrs Lehmann and Mr and Mrs Herman owned adjoining homes. Mr Herman wished to repair the Party Fence Wall that divided the two gardens and served a Notification on Mr and Mrs Lehmann. Nevertheless, as Mr Herman just served the Notification in his name, Mr and Mrs Lehmann contradicted the Notice as standing and argued that as both Mr and Mrs Herman would be considered as Structure Owners under the Act, Mrs Herman ought to likewise be consisted of on the Notice. The disagreement ended up in court and the judge agreed with the Lehmanns that the Notice was invalid.
What is a Party Wall Award?
A Party Wall Award is a lawfully binding file between Structure Owners and Adjoining Owners, which has actually been agreed by the designated property surveyor( s), authorising the execution of building work in accordance with the Act. A Set up of Condition survey of the Adjoining Owners property, although not a particular requirement of the Party Wall and so on. Act 1996, is customary and forms a referral file within the Award.
I Currently Have Planning Permission And/ Or Building Control Approval. Do I Still Required To Follow The Party Wall Act?
If your prepared works would be considered notifiable under the Party Wall Act then yes, you would have to follow the procedures set out within the Act. No Local Authority permission or approval would get rid of the legal responsibility to serve a Party Wall Notification upon your neighbour( s).
Does The Party Wall Act Cover Garden Fences?
The Act does cover “Party Fence Walls” which are deemed to be a wall of solid structure that sits astride a border and not belonging to a building. Any works to such walls that would be considered notifiable under the Party Wall Act would likewise apply to Party Fence Walls. Lumber fencing, precast concrete posts with infill panel fencing, etc would not be deemed to be a Party Fence Wall, whether astride a boundary or not.
If the Adjoining Owners are satisfied that the Structure Owners’ proposed works will be of no trouble or, pose no threat of damage to their residential or commercial property, the Adjoining Owners just require to validate, in composing, that they consent to the works and the Party Wall etc. At the point of a “conflict” having emerged, both the Building Owners and the Adjoining Owners have to designate a Party Wall Surveyor to continue with solving the conflict. The Party Wall Business are often commissioned to provide advice on the Act and to serve the pertinent Party Wall Notices, ensuring they are lawfully legitimate. A Party Wall Award is a legally binding file in between Building Owners and Adjacent Owners, which has been concurred by the selected surveyor( s), authorising the execution of structure work in accordance with the Act. Any works to such walls that would be deemed notifiable under the Party Wall Act would likewise use to Party Fence Walls.
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