Faulkners Surveyors is a respectable and professional firm of party wall surveyors in Rushden, specialising in all party wall matters in Rushden and the Home Counties. The company was founded in 2010 with the coming together of 3 independent skilled Surveyors who specialise in this niché area of surveying.
What is a party wall in Rushden?
A party wall is a wall that sits straight on the boundary of land in between two (and sometimes more) various owners. Fine examples consist of the walls that separate semi-detached or terraced homes– or walls that comprise the boundary between 2 gardens (party fence walls).
The Party Wall Act
The Party Wall Act 1996 applies to homes in England and Wales and was developed to prevent building work that could jeopardize the structural integrity of any shared wall (party wall) or adjoining properties. The Party Wall Act can be used to stop disputes between neighbours and to assist fix them if they ought to arise.
The Party Wall Act 1996 does not apply to Scotland and Northern Ireland where common law is utilized to settle party wall concerns.
Do I need a party wall agreement?
If you plan on bring out any structure work near or on a party wall, a party wall agreement is required. You must inform your neighbours, supply them with a Party Wall Notice and come up with a Party Wall Agreement in writing. If you utilize a designer or a home builder then they should be able to advise you on this, although they will not serve the notification for you.
The following works need you to acquire a Party Wall Agreement:
- Any work to shared walls (party walls) in between semi-detached and terraced houses.
- Work involving shared ‘party structures’, such as floors in between flats.
- Work to garden limit walls.
- Excavation works– or underpinning– to, or nearby (within 3-6m), the party wall.
- Loft conversions that suggest cutting into a party wall.
- Placing a damp evidence course into a party wall.
- Making party walls thicker or greater.
- Constructing a second-storey extension above a shared wall.
- Constructing a brand-new wall as much as or off the party wall.
Which tasks do not require a party wall agreement?
Not all work to party walls requires a party wall agreement. These include small works such as drilling into the wall internally to fit kitchen units or shelving. Having the wall plastered or including or replacing electrical wiring or sockets will not require an agreement either.
What is a party wall notice?
A Party Wall Notice need to be offered to your neighbours to provide them with notification of the works you plan to perform to the party wall in question, between 2 months and a year in advance of the work beginning.
Preparation authorization is not needed to serve a party wall notice and, since you will have up to a year to begin work when the notification has actually been served, it is a good idea to do this as soon as possible in order to avoid hold-ups. You must speak with your neighbours face to face first prior to serving composed notice in order to assure them that you are taking the correct route and safety measures. This need to help you prevent misconceptions or disputes, and enable a swift arrangement to be written up.
You might likewise offer your neighbour details of the Party Wall Act to help them comprehend the process– point them in the direction of the Party Wall info section on the Federal government’s site.
In order to formally serve notice, you should write to your affected neighbour( s), including your contact information, thorough information of the work that you have prepared, the date that work will start, as well as any gain access to requirements over their property (perhaps to get materials or devices onto website). When it comes to adjacent leasehold homes, you should serve notice to the building’s owners in addition to to the occupant( s) living there.
A helpful guide, along with Party Wall Notice templates can be found on the Federal government’s site here. It is smart to confine a reply letter and envelope for the neighbours to sign and return– which, if you have spoken with them before sending, must not come as a surprise.
What happens once my neighbour receives my Party Wall Notice?
They have a number of options:
- Provide approval in writing.
- Refuse approval– beginning the ‘disagreement resolution process’.
- Issue a counter notice, asking for that extra works be carried out at the same time (something they will be needed to spend for if they will be taking advantage of the work, such as repairs to the shared wall).
You should wait on a reaction– your neighbour should let you understand, in composing, within 14 days if they consent. The very best case scenario is that they agree to all the works, in composing, indicating you will not need a party wall agreement, which minimizes charges.
A counter notification needs to be issued within a month of your notification. Then the disagreement resolution procedure starts, if your neighbours don’t react within the above timescales.
What happens if I don’t serve a Party Wall Notice?
Whilst stopping working to get a Party Wall Agreement is not really a legal offense, not just will you be breaching a ‘statutory task’ however you likewise risk needing to spend for damage that wasn’t your fault. Your neighbour might claim their home has actually been damaged by your work and without any information or evidence of the previous state of the residential or commercial property (which a party wall notice would have given 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 may be purchased to spend for repair work which, in reality, may not be your responsibility. In addition, your neighbours could take civil action versus you and have an injunction provided to prevent any more work till a party wall agreement is set up. This will delay the task and could increase costs.
My neighbour refused to provide grant my party wall agreement – what happens next?
If, after serving notice, your neighbour either declines consent or fails to react, you are considered to be ‘in dispute.’
You have a few choices here. First of all, you might contact your neighbour, listen to their concerns and try to come to an arrangement you are both pleased with. This is the suitable.
They may write to you with a counter notice. These notices typically ask for changes to the work defined, or extra works, or in some cases conditions such as limited working hours. If you can both agree on these modified terms, you ought to put them in composing and continue. Your neighbour may need to satisfy a share of the expenses of any extra work that they request which will benefit them.
If an agreement is out of the question then you will require to select a party wall surveyor. You could select a property surveyor to work for both of you, or each select your own. The property surveyor will organize a Party Wall Award, setting out information of the work.
The Party Wall Award is a legal document setting out what, how and when work can be carried out and who will spend for it (including property surveyor’s costs). If you are not happy with the award, you can appeal versus it at a county court, submitting an ‘appellant’s notice’ to describe why you are launching an appeal.
Do I need a party wall surveyor?
In a lot of cases individuals discover they do not need the services of a party wall surveyor. If your neighbour reacts to your notice allowing in writing that works can commence, there is usually no need to select a surveyor.
In any case, you are still responsible for guaranteeing any damage triggered during the works is fixed. Check the wall with your neighbour before work starts and take and share photos of the wall in order to prevent later disputes– for instance existing cracks. Some people decide to ask a surveyor to perform a condition study at this phase in order to reduce the threat of conflicts.
If your neighbour does not give permission, you will need a Party Wall Award and, therefore, a party wall surveyor. Generally you and your neighbour will utilize just one surveyor (an excellent idea as it suggests only one set of fees).
Costs differ, however typically, a Party Wall Award expenses around ₤ 1,000 in overall.
A party wall agreement is needed if you prepare on bring out any building work near or on a party wall. You must inform your neighbours, supply them with a Party Wall Notice and come up with a Party Wall Agreement in writing. Not all work to celebration walls needs a party wall agreement. Planning permission is not needed to serve a party wall notice and, due to the fact that you will have up to a year to begin work when the notification has been served, it is a good idea to do this as soon as possible in order to prevent hold-ups. Examine the wall with your neighbour prior to work starts and take and share photos of the wall in order to avoid later on disagreements– for example existing cracks.
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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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