Faulkners Surveyors is an independent company of building surveyors that specialise in the

Party Wall etc. Act 1996 acting for Structure Owners, Adjacent Owners and as the Agreed Surveyor throughout London and the House Counties.

Party Wall (WikiPedia)

A party wall (periodically parti-wall or parting wall, likewise referred to as typical wall surface or as a demising wall) is a dividing dividers in between 2 adjacent buildings that is shared by the passengers of each home or organization. Commonly, the contractor lays the wall along a property line separating 2 terraced houses, to make sure that one half of the wall’s density pushes each side. This sort of wall surface is generally structural. Party walls can likewise be created by 2 abutting wall surfaces developed at various times. The term can be likewise utilized to define a division in between separate devices within a multi-unit apartment facility. Really frequently the wall surface in this instance is non-structural but developed to fulfill established criteria for noise and/or fire protection, i.e. a firewall.

Party Wall


We appreciate that many individuals wanting to perform deal with their home have the requirements of The Party Wall Act thrust upon at a fairly late stage in the pre-construction process. We also comprehend it can be an overwhelming process for those that have not experienced it previously. Here in Faulkners Surveyors, one of our senior property surveyors, offers his “newbies guide” which intends to supply a summary understanding of party walls and the requirements of the Party Wall Act …

What is the Party Wall Act?

The Party Wall etc Act 1996 offers a procedure to follow when building work includes a party wall or party fence wall, some excavations near to neighbouring structures, and new walls at boundaries. The Act permits owners to perform certain particular works, consisting of work to the full density of a party wall, whilst at the same time safeguarding the interests of anybody else who might be affected by that work. The Act is designed to avoid or minimise disagreements by making sure property owners notify their neighbours in advance of particular proposed works.

The Act supplies a system for solving disagreements and making it possible for works to continue. It also needs that, where the adjoining owner does not ‘agree’ in writing to the works, a property surveyor or property surveyors will determine the time and way in which those works are performed.

What is a party wall?

Party walls generally separate buildings coming from different owners however might consist of garden walls constructed astride a border– called party fence walls. Where a wall separates 2 various size structures often only the part that is used by both homes is a party wall, the rest comes from the individual or individuals on whose land it stands.

The “etc” within The Party Wall etc Act 1996 is so included due to the fact that the provisions of the Act are not limited to party walls, they likewise include party structures and party fence walls.

Section 20 of the Act specifies each:

” party fence wall” indicates a wall (not becoming part of a building) which bases on lands of different owners and is used or constructed to be utilized for separating such adjacent lands, but does not consist of a wall constructed on the land of one owner the synthetically formed assistance of which jobs into the land of another owner;

” party structure” indicates a party wall and likewise a floor partition or other structure separating buildings or parts of buildings approached entirely by different staircases or separate entrances;

What is covered by the Act?

There are certain items of work that you can just be done after notifying the adjoining owners and either receiving written arrangement of the neighbour or with a Party Wall Award prepared by a surveyor/s.

Notifiable works consist of (but are not restricted to):.

Notifications are likewise required if it is proposed to develop a new wall on the line of junction (border line). A party wall surveyor will normally have the ability to validate which work is notifiable and recommendations the notification period and type of notification needed.

What is not covered by the Act?

The Act relates just to particular specific kinds of work and is permissive in nature. It must not be seen as a technique of objecting to or preventing works and it is not meant to be applied to minor jobs that do not affect the structural stability or loading of a party wall.

It is generally concurred that works such as fixing plug sockets, screwing in shelving or replastering walls are minor works and do not need a notification.


The operations of the Act are always initiated by the of issuing notifications. This is the first stage of the procedure and, without the problem of valid notices, no further action can be taken under the arrangement of the Act.

Written notice must be served on adjacent owners at least 2 months before beginning any party wall works (one month for works to the line of junction or excavations). All adjacent owners should be served a notice and there are most likely to be instances where there is more than one adjacent residential or commercial property and more than one owner of each property (ie: if the adjoining residential or commercial property is divided into flats and owned on a leasehold basis, notices will be needed to both leaseholder and freeholder of all flats affected by the works). Functions to a party wall, or those affecting a ceiling or floor, will likewise require a notice to adjoining owners living above or below.

Valid notifications need to consist of the following details as a minimum:.

It is necessary to include the right details on a notice as, if they are considered void, then any subsequent actions are likewise void.

Actions To Notifications.

On receipt of a notification, an adjoining owner has three possible strategies:.

If the adjacent does not react within 14 days then a considered conflict is stated to have occurred and the individual bring out the work needs to appoint a surveyor to act on the adjacent owners behalf.

If adjacent owners supply composed grant the works as set out within the notifications, then there is no dispute to deal with and no more need for party wall surveyors or, indeed, the Party Wall Act. Assuming work proceeds as detailed within no damage and the notification is caused, then no additional participation is necessary.

Solving Disputes.

If adjacent owners dissent to the works (or if no action is received and a deemed dissent has actually arisen) then a dispute has happened which should be dealt with under the requirements of Area 10 of The Act. It is worth restating that the Act is one of enablement, it is not there to prevent works from taking place and it uses a path to end disagreements at every phase. Where written agreement is not given, the service the Act supplies is for both parties to appoint an ‘agreed surveyor’ who will act impartially or for each owner to select a surveyor who in turn appoint a third surveyor. The surveyors then work together to concur the terms under which work might proceed. The surveyor( s) will evaluate the plans, notifications and structural information of the works and, after considering the impact of the works, will draw up an agreement which sets out the terms under which work can be carried out (the Award).

The Party Wall Award.

The award will normally record the condition of the appropriate part of adjoining residential or commercial property before work begins (this is not a requirement under the Act but is considered good practice and is appropriately supplied by most excellent property surveyors). The award might also approve access to both properties so that the works can be securely carried out and the surveyor/s can check work in progress.

Typically, the building owner who started the work pays for all expenses of work and the reasonable costs incurred by all parties as a result, this will include the property surveyors costs for both Building Owner and Adjoining Owner.

We appreciate that many people wishing to bring out works on their residential or commercial property have the requirements of The Party Wall Act thrust upon at a relatively late phase in the pre-construction process. Here, Michael White C.Build.E MCABE MFPWS, one of our senior surveyors, offers his “novices guide” which aims to offer a summary understanding of party walls and the requirements of the Party Wall Act …

What is the Party Wall Celebration?

The Party Wall etc Act 1996 provides a treatment to follow when constructing work involves a party wall or party fence wall, some excavations close to neighbouring buildings, and brand-new walls at boundaries. The Act allows owners to carry out particular particular works, including work to the full thickness of a party wall, whilst at the very same time securing the interests of anyone else who might be affected by that work. Written notification needs to be served on adjacent owners at least two months before starting any party wall works (one month for works to the line of junction or excavations).

Related Articles

Around the Web