Faulkners Surveyors is a credible and expert firm of party wall surveyors in Taunton, specialising in all party wall matters in Taunton and the Home Counties. The business was founded in 2010 with the coming together of three independent experienced Surveyors who specialise in this niché area of surveying.
Do I require a party wall agreement in Taunton?
When do you require a party wall notice or party wall agreement (technically called a party wall award)? Our guide provides you all the answers you need to get the right consents to perform your building 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, typically between a terrace or semi-detached house, and divides the houses of 2 separate owners
- It likewise consists of garden walls developed over a border and excavations near a neighbour’s residential or commercial property (within three or six meters, depending upon the depth of the new structures).
- In the home, Party Wall Agreements are most frequently needed for building works that include loft conversions, the insertion of moist proof courses and the digging of brand-new foundations (as would be required in building an extension).
Getting permission for party wall structure works.
- Before party wall building works can start, the homeowner (Building Owner) requires a written Party Wall Agreement from all affected neighbours (Adjoining Owners).
- Or a property surveyor needs to be selected to prepare a Party Wall Award (the agreed document describing how the works need to progress). Instantly discover competent regional Party Wall Surveyors with our complimentary Party Wall Surveyor service.
- To begin this process, the property owner has to serve a Party Wall Notice on their neighbours, in composing, about the prepared party wall works.
Serving a party wall notice.
Serving notice can be done for free, using appropriate standard forms or by a party wall surveyor for a flat charge. A letter of acknowledgement for the neighbour to return and complete is usually consisted of.
A homeowner needs to provide 2 months written notice on building works which impact a party wall or boundary, or one month’s notice for excavations.
Preparation consent is not needed to serve a Party Wall notice, and once notification has been served, the property owner has up to a year to start work.
Once notification is served, a neighbour has fourteen days to react, after which, there are 3 possible outcomes:.
i) The neighbour offers assent in writing providing the property owner will rectify any problems.
- In such straightforward cases, there is no requirement to select a party wall surveyor or have a Party Wall Award.
- The homeowner ought to take dated photos of the party wall and ideally have concurred written notes of any cracks, with copies for both.
- Or a property surveyor could be appointed to assess and prepare a schedule of condition to reduce the danger of conflicts later. This need to be done quickly before the work begins.
ii) If the neighbour dissents (or if they do not NOT respond within 14 days, in which case, they are assumed to have dissented), a Party Wall Award is needed.
- In this case, both homeowner and neighbour can designate ONE Concurred Surveyor, typically within 10 days, who can act impartially for both.
- The concurred surveyor must be independent and NOT the same surveyor the house owner might be utilizing for their own works. Otherwise their neighbour is not likely to see the surveyor as neutral.
- The Agreed Surveyor produces an “Award” which information the works proposed and a schedule of condition, including photos, of the neighbour’s home.
- Surveyors’ rates vary between ₤ 150.00 and ₤ 200.00 per hour and a party wall award and surveyor expenses around ₤ 1000.00.
- Some architects are also able to serve as surveyors.
iii) Each owner selects their own surveyor. However, this is pricey for the homeowner who is responsible for the costs of their neighbour’s surveyor along with their own.
It is necessary that all these options offered to the neighbour, are discussed plainly in the notice.
Keeping excellent relationships with your neighbours.
- Prior to posting a Party Wall notice through your neighbour’s letterbox, which can appear challenging, have a friendly chat initially.
- A shared cup of tea fosters good will and eases fears. It is a chance to show sketches and explain the planned works. It is worthwhile including that a formal notification will be sent out later on.
- It is reasonable for your neighbour to request for the contact information of your surveyor and/or building company for more info and peace of mind.
i) not providing sufficient notice.
If you live in a terraced home, neighbours on both sides may be impacted depending on the works. A house owner living next to flats, might require to serve notification on a number of various people.
iii) not explaining the proposed work exactly enough or not consisting of sufficient information. Notifications about excavations, for example, need to include full structural details.
iv) not utilizing the standard, or wrong type of notification. The form of notice for excavating foundations is different from a party wall.
One building task might require more than one type of notification served on each affected neighbour.
2 months and one day later: building works can start, presuming the party wall award has been agreed.
One year and one day later: developing works must have started.
Discover 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 discover a party wall surveyor.
It is worthwhile adding that an official notice will be sent later.
If you live in a terraced home, neighbours on both sides may be impacted depending on the works. A property owner living next to flats, may require to serve notice on a number of various individuals.
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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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