Faulkners Surveyors Professional Qualified Resident Party Wall in Blackpool Surveyors covering Blackpool and the Home Counties. Unlike lots of others, we are full time Local Party Wall Surveyors carrying out numerous Party Wall projects monthly without fault.
What is a party wall in Blackpool?
A party wall is a wall that sits directly on the border of land between two (and often more) various owners. Good examples consist of the walls that separate terraced or semi-detached homes– or walls that comprise the boundary in between two gardens (party fence walls).
The Party Wall Act
The Party Wall Act 1996 applies to houses in England and Wales and was created to prevent structure work that might compromise the structural integrity of any shared wall (party wall) or adjoining homes. If they ought to occur, the Party Wall Act can be used to stop disputes between neighbours and to help resolve them.
The Party Wall Act 1996 does not apply to Scotland and Northern Ireland where common law is used to settle party wall problems.
Do I require a party wall agreement?
A party wall agreement is required if you intend on performing any structure work near or on a party wall. You need to inform your neighbours, supply them with a Party Wall Notice and come up with a Party Wall Agreement in writing. Although they will not serve the notice for you if you use an architect or a home builder then they need to be able to recommend you on this.
The following works need you to get a Party Wall Agreement:
- Any work to shared walls (party walls) in between terraced and semi-detached houses.
- Work involving shared ‘party structures’, such as floors between flats.
- Work to garden limit walls.
- Excavation works– or underpinning– to, or close by (within 3-6m), the party wall.
- Loft conversions that mean cutting into a party wall.
- Placing a moist proof course into a party wall.
- Making party walls thicker or higher.
- Developing a second-storey extension above a shared wall.
- Developing a new wall approximately or off the party wall.
Which jobs do not require a party wall agreement?
Not all work to party walls requires a party wall agreement. These include minor works such as drilling into the wall internally to fit kitchen units or shelving. Having the wall plastered or adding or replacing electrical wiring or sockets will not require an arrangement either.
What is a party wall notice?
A Party Wall Notice should be given to your neighbours to offer them with notification of the works you mean to carry out to the party wall in question, between two months and a year in advance of the work starting.
Planning approval is not required to serve a party wall notice and, since you will have up to a year to begin work once the notice has been served, it is a great concept to do this as soon as possible in order to avoid delays. You ought to speak with your neighbours personally first prior to serving composed notice in order to assure them that you are taking the appropriate route and precautions. This should help you prevent misunderstandings or disagreements, and make it possible for a quick arrangement to be written.
You might also offer your neighbour information of the Party Wall Act to help them comprehend the procedure– point them in the direction of the Party Wall details section on the Government’s website.
In order to formally serve notice, you must write to your impacted neighbour( s), including your contact info, detailed details of the work that you have actually prepared, the date that work will start, in addition to any access requirements over their property (maybe to get products or equipment onto website). When it comes to adjacent leasehold properties, you must serve notice to the structure’s owners as well as to the occupant( s) living there.
An useful guide, along with Party Wall Notice templates can be discovered on the Federal government’s website here. It is a good idea to enclose a reply letter and envelope for the neighbours to return and sign– which, if you have actually spoken with them prior to sending, should not come as a surprise.
What takes place when my neighbour receives my Party Wall Notice?
They have a number of options:
- Offer consent in writing.
- Decline authorization– starting the ‘disagreement resolution process’.
- Issue a counter notification, requesting that extra works be performed at the same time (something they will be needed to pay for if they will be benefiting from the work, such as repairs to the shared wall).
You should wait for an action– your neighbour should let you understand, in composing, within 14 days if they consent. The best case situation is that they accept all the works, in composing, indicating you will not need a party wall agreement, which minimizes costs.
A counter notification needs to be released within a month of your notification. If your neighbours do not respond within the above timescales then the conflict resolution procedure begins.
What occurs if I do not serve a Party Wall Notice?
Whilst failing to get a Party Wall Agreement is not actually a legal offense, not only will you be breaching a ‘statutory duty’ but you also run the risk of needing to pay for damage that wasn’t your fault. Your neighbour might declare their home has actually been damaged by your work and without any information or evidence of the previous state of the home (which a party wall notice would have offered you) there is very little you can do.
The courts tend to take a bad view of failure to serve a party wall notice and you might be purchased to pay for repair work which, in reality, might not be your responsibility. In addition, your neighbours might take civil action against you and have actually an injunction provided to prevent any additional work until a party wall agreement is organized. This will delay the job and could increase expenses.
My neighbour declined to provide consent to my party wall agreement – what occurs next?
If, after serving notice, your neighbour either refuses consent or fails to react, you are thought about to be ‘in dispute.’
You have a few choices here. You could call your neighbour, listen to their concerns and attempt to come to a contract you are both happy with. This is the ideal.
They might write to you with a counter notice. These notices generally ask for modifications to the work specified, or extra works, or often conditions such as limited working hours. You ought to put them in writing and continue if you can both concur on these modified terms. Your neighbour may need to fulfill a share of the expenses of any extra work that they ask for which will benefit them.
Then you will need to appoint a party wall surveyor, if a contract is out of the question. You could appoint a property surveyor to work for both of you, or each designate your own. The property surveyor will organize a Party Wall Award, setting out information of the work.
The Party Wall Award is a legal file setting out what, how and when work can be performed and who will spend for it (consisting of property surveyor’s costs). If you are not pleased with the award, you can appeal versus it at a county court, submitting an ‘appellant’s notification’ to discuss why you are launching an appeal.
Do I require a party wall surveyor?
In a lot of cases individuals find they do not need the services of a party wall surveyor. There is generally no need to appoint a property surveyor if your neighbour responds to your notification offering consent in composing that works can commence.
In any case, you are still responsible for ensuring any damage caused throughout the works is repaired. Inspect the wall with your neighbour before work starts and take and share photos of the wall in order to prevent later disputes– for example existing cracks. Some people choose to ask a surveyor to perform a condition study at this phase in order to minimise the danger of disagreements.
If your neighbour does not give permission, you will require a Party Wall Award and, therefore, a party wall surveyor. Typically you and your neighbour will utilize just one surveyor (an excellent idea as it implies only one set of fees).
Charges differ, however usually, a Party Wall Award expenses around ₤ 1,000 in total.
A party wall agreement is required if you plan on carrying out any building work near or on a party wall. You need to tell your neighbours, provide them with a Party Wall Notice and come up with a Party Wall Agreement in writing. Not all work to celebration walls requires a party wall agreement. Preparation approval is not required to serve a party wall notice and, since you will have up to a year to begin work when the notification has been served, it is a great idea to do this as quickly as possible in order to avoid delays. Examine the wall with your neighbour prior to work starts and take and share pictures of the wall in order to prevent later disagreements– for example existing fractures.
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