What is the Party Wall Bentley Act?
By Claire Lloyd June 23, 2020
If you’re planning building work that will affect a shared wall between you and your neighbours, then you’ll need to be clued up on the Party Wall Act
If you’re wanting to carry out structure work on a terraced or semi-detached house or flat, then it is most likely you will have a shared wall with a neighbouring home.
The Party Wall Act prevents structure work carried out by one neighbour weakening the structural stability of neighbouring properties or shared walls. It is likewise developed to avert and solve possible conflicts with neighbours.
Will it Affect my Strategies to Remodel?
If you live in a semi, balcony, flat, or your detached home is sited within close proximity to neighbouring homes, it might.
The crucial things to bear in mind are which walls constitute as ‘party walls’ and the type of work subject to the Act.
Type of work
More extensive work is covered by the Party Wall Act. This consists of:
- converting a loft that includes cutting into border walls to support brand-new beams
- placing a damp-proof course
- increasing the density
- destroying and restoring a party wall
- extending above a storey which pushes the limit
- developing a new wall for an extension, for example, up to or on the border
- excavation work for brand-new structures, based on condition (see below). You’ll require to guarantee your neighbour of the safeguards in place to secure their structures.
Shallow tasks are not consisted of, such as:
- fitting shelves
- electrical rewiring
If you prepare to carry out any work covered by the Act, you’ll also need to provide ‘Notice’ of the start of work to your neighbour.
You should notify under the Party Wall Act if you’re excavating for new foundations deeper than the foundations of your neighbours’ house, within 3 metres of the boundary, or within 6 metres if a 45 ° will be formed between the bottom of your brand-new foundations and those coming from your neighbour.
You don’t require preparing authorization for your plans to serve notice.
How Do I Provide ‘Notification’?
If your job is covered by the Act, you notify with a letter setting out your intentions, sent to all the owners of every neighbouring residential or commercial property impacted.
A sample letter is consisted of within The Party Wall Act brochure (download or buy your copy at communities.gov.uk).
Keep in mind to include all the key info, including:
- the date the Notification is served
- the date work will begin
- all parties’ addresses and names
- a description of the proposed work
Your Notification will be void if you do not do this.
When Do I Need to Offer Party Wall Notice?
When complete, present this, together with a copy of the Act and explanatory booklet, to your neighbour two months before beginning. If you are excavating near a neighbouring structure then you require to offer at least one month’s notice.), (.
Your neighbour will have 14 days to offer written approval or rejection. Let them understand a design template is offered for both choices in the explanatory brochure.
- Your Notice will be valid for a year to finish work if they offer approval.
- If they turn down or do not react within 2 week, then you’re considered to be in dispute.
What Takes place if the Neighbours Things?
Speak with your neighbours and explain your strategies in detail to reach a contract.
If approval is difficult, then you will need to assign an ‘concurred surveyor’ or two surveyors to prepare a Party Wall Award. This ‘Award’ covers:.
- the work that can be carried out.
- how the works will continue.
- measures for avoiding damage.
- the payment of surveyors’ fees.
- the current condition of both properties.
- most notably, costs payable to the adjacent owner if damage happens.
What Does a Party Wall Surveyor Do?
In other words, party wall surveyors help mitigate risk to all parties, and ensure that tasks can progress without delay.
If you properly serve notice on your neighbours and damage occurs, any conflicts over that damage will be dealt with by surveyors rather than at common law.
Is a Party Wall Notice Mandatory?
If things turn sour with your neighbour and they suspect that the work being carried out will negatively affect their house, they can seek a court injunction to stop you from continuing.
If you have not followed the Act and you trigger major damage to your neighbour’s property, the judge can award payment for any loss or damage resulting from the works, including legal expenses.
An authorized Notice is the only method to prevent this.
Cost of a Party Wall Notice.
For a straightforward job outside London with an adjacent owner dissenting to the works, fees are likely to be in the region of ₤ 1,000-2,000 plus VAT.
Fees will depend on the nature and complexity of the work being carried out as well as the variety of adjoining owners. And it is not always the case that the person initiating the work will pay all parties’ charges.
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Learn More about Party Wall
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.
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