Faulkners Surveyors is a reputable and expert firm of party wall surveyors in Stafford, specialising in all party wall matters in Stafford and the Home Counties. The business was founded in 2010 with the coming together of 3 independent knowledgeable Surveyors who specialise in this niché area of surveying.
Do I require a party wall agreement in Stafford?
When do you require a party wall notice or party wall agreement (technically called a party wall award)? Our guide gives you all the answers you require to get the proper approvals to carry out your structure works. And, if you require one, how to discover a party wall surveyor.
When do I need a party wall agreement?
- A party wall is the shared wall, usually between a balcony or semi-detached house, and divides the houses of 2 different owners
- It likewise consists of garden walls developed over a boundary and excavations near a neighbour’s residential or commercial property (within three or six meters, depending on the depth of the new foundations).
- In the house, Party Wall Agreements are most commonly required for building works that involve loft conversions, the insertion of wet evidence courses and the digging of new structures (as would be needed in building an extension).
Obtaining authorization for party wall structure works.
- Prior to party wall structure works can begin, the house owner (Structure Owner) requires a written Party Wall Agreement from all affected neighbours (Adjacent Owners).
- Or a surveyor needs to be selected to prepare a Party Wall Award (the agreed file detailing how the works must advance). Quickly discover competent regional Party Wall Surveyors with our complimentary Party Wall Surveyor service.
- To start this procedure, the homeowner needs to serve a Party Wall Notice on their neighbours, in composing, about the planned party wall works.
Serving a party wall notice.
Serving notice can be done for free, utilizing suitable standard types or by a party wall surveyor for a flat charge. A letter of recognition for the neighbour to finish and return is generally included.
A homeowner needs to offer 2 months composed notification on structure works which impact a party wall or boundary, or one month’s notification for excavations.
Planning permission is not needed to serve a Party Wall notice, and once notice has been served, the house owner has up to a year to begin work.
When notice is served, a neighbour has fourteen days to react, after which, there are 3 possible outcomes:.
i) The neighbour gives assent in writing offering the house owner will put right any issues.
- In such uncomplicated cases, there is no requirement to appoint a party wall surveyor or have a Party Wall Award.
- The house owner should take dated photos of the party wall and preferably have agreed written notes of any cracks, with copies for both.
- Or a property surveyor could be appointed to prepare a schedule and assess of condition to reduce the danger of disagreements later. This need to be done soon prior to the work begins.
ii) If the neighbour dissents (or if they do not NOT respond within 2 week, in which case, they are assumed to have dissented), a Party Wall Award is required.
- In this case, both property owner and neighbour can appoint ONE Concurred Property surveyor, normally within ten days, who can act impartially for both.
- The concurred property surveyor must be independent and NOT the exact same surveyor the property owner might be using for their own works. Otherwise their neighbour is not likely to see the surveyor as neutral.
- The Agreed Property surveyor produces an “Award” which information the works proposed and a schedule of condition, including pictures, of the neighbour’s house.
- Surveyors’ rates vary between ₤ 150.00 and ₤ 200.00 per hour and a party wall award and surveyor costs around ₤ 1000.00.
- Some designers are also able to act as surveyors.
iii) Each owner designates their own property surveyor. This is costly for the house owner who is accountable for the expenses of their neighbour’s surveyor as well as their own.
It is very important that all these options offered to the neighbour, are explained clearly in the notification.
Keeping great relationships with your neighbours.
- Prior to posting a Party Wall notice through your neighbour’s letterbox, which can appear intimidating, have a friendly chat.
- A shared cup of tea fosters good will and eases fears. It is an opportunity to show sketches and explain the prepared works. It is worthwhile including that an official notification will be sent later on.
- It is reasonable for your neighbour to ask for the contact details of your property surveyor and/or structure business for further details and reassurance.
i) not supplying appropriate notice.
ii) not notifying all the impacted neighbours. This includes the freeholder and anybody with a leasehold longer than a year. If you reside in a terraced house, neighbours on both sides might be affected depending upon the works. A house owner living next to flats, may need to serve notice on a number of different people. Check property ownership through the Land Pc registry.
iii) not explaining the proposed work precisely enough or not including enough details. Notices about excavations, for example, require to include complete structural details.
iv) not utilizing the requirement, or incorrect kind of notice. The form of notice for excavating structures is different from a party wall.
One building job might need more than one kind of notice served on each impacted neighbour.
2 months and one day later on: building works can begin, assuming the party wall award has actually been agreed.
One year and one day later on: building works should have started.
Find a party wall surveyor.
When do you require a party wall notice or party wall agreement (technically called a party wall award)? And, if you need one, how to find a party wall surveyor.
It is beneficial adding that an official notification will be sent out later.
If you live in a terraced home, neighbours on both sides might be impacted depending on the works. A property owner living next to flats, might need to serve notification on a number of various people.
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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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