The Faulkners Surveyors is a professional Chartered Building Surveying Practice that runs throughout UK. The Faulkners Surveyors carries out all elements of the Party Wall etc. Act 1996 and provides the following services:
Neutral advice on all Party Wall Matters
Preparation and service of valid Party Wall Notices
Acting as Party Wall Surveyor for either Adjoining Owners or Building Owners
Acting as the Agreed Party Wall Property Surveyor
Carrying Out Schedules of Condition surveys
Preparation and settlement of Party Wall Awards (Arrangements).
Party Wall (WikiPedia)
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.
THE PARTY WALL ACT 1996- A NOVICES GUIDE
We value that many individuals wishing to perform works on their home have the requirements of The Party Wall Act thrust upon at a relatively late stage in the pre-construction procedure. We also comprehend it can be a difficult procedure for those that have actually not experienced it before. Here in Faulkners Surveyors, one of our senior surveyors, offers his “newbies guide” which aims to provide an outline understanding of party walls and the requirements of the Party Wall Act …
What is the Party Wall Act?
The Party Wall etc Act 1996 offers a treatment to follow when developing work includes a party wall or party fence wall, some excavations near to neighbouring buildings, and new walls at borders. The Act permits owners to perform certain specific works, consisting of work to the full thickness of a party wall, whilst at the same time protecting the interests of anybody else who might be impacted by that work. The Act is designed to prevent or minimise conflicts by ensuring homeowner inform their neighbours in advance of certain proposed works.
The Act supplies a mechanism for dealing with conflicts and allowing works to continue. It also needs that, where the adjoining owner does not ‘agree’ in writing to the works, a property surveyor or property surveyors will identify the time and way in which those works are carried out.
What is a party wall?
Party walls typically separate structures belonging to various owners however could include garden walls built astride a border– known as party fence walls. Where a wall separates 2 different size buildings frequently only the part that is utilized by both homes is a party wall, the rest comes from the individual or individuals on whose land it stands.
The “etc” within The Party Wall etc Act 1996 is so consisted of since the arrangements of the Act are not limited to party walls, they likewise include party structures and party fence walls.
Area 20 of the Act defines each:
” party fence wall” means a wall (not becoming part of a structure) which bases on lands of various owners and is utilized or constructed to be utilized for separating such adjacent lands, however does not consist of a wall constructed on the land of one owner the artificially formed support of which jobs into the land of another owner;
” party structure” indicates a party wall and likewise a floor partition or other structure separating buildings or parts of structures approached exclusively by different entrances or different staircases;
What is covered by the Act?
There are particular items of work that you can just be done after informing the adjacent owners and either getting written contract of the neighbour or with a Party Wall Award prepared by a surveyor/s.
Notifiable works consist of (but are not restricted to):.
- cutting into a wall to take the bearing of a beam, for instance for a loft conversion.
- placing a damp evidence course, even if only to your own side of a party wall.
- raising a party wall and, if needed, cutting off any items avoiding this from occurring.
- destroying and reconstructing a party wall.
- underpinning a party wall or part of a party wall.
- weathering the junction of adjacent walls or structures by cutting a flashing into an adjacent building.
- excavating structures within 3 metres of a neighbour’s structure and lower than its foundations.
- excavating structures within 6 metres of a neighbour’s structure and below a line drawn down at 45 ° from the bottom of its structures.
If it is proposed to develop a new wall on the line of junction (boundary line), notifications are likewise required. A party wall surveyor will normally be able to verify which work is notifiable and guidance the notice period and type of notice needed.
What is not covered by the Act?
The Act relates only to particular particular kinds of work and is permissive in nature. It should not be viewed as a method of objecting to or avoiding works and it is not meant to be applied to small tasks that do not affect the structural stability or loading of a party wall.
It is generally concurred that works such as repairing plug sockets, screwing in shelving or replastering walls are small works and do not require a notification.
The functions of the Act are always initiated by the of issuing notifications. This is the first stage of the procedure and, without the problem of valid notifications, no further action can be taken under the arrangement of the Act.
Composed notification needs to be served on adjacent owners at least two months before beginning any party wall works (one month for works to the line of junction or excavations). All adjoining owners must be served a notice and there are most likely to be instances where there is more than one adjoining home and more than one owner of each home (ie: if the adjoining property is split into flats and owned on a leasehold basis, notices will be needed to both leaseholder and freeholder of all flats affected by the works). Functions to a party wall, or those affecting a ceiling or flooring, will likewise require a notice to adjacent owners living above or below.
Legitimate notifications must contain the following details as a minimum:.
- The name and address of the building owner;.
- The nature and details of the proposed work including plans, areas and information of building and construction techniques.
- The date on which the proposed work will start.
It is vital to consist of the right information on a notice as, if they are considered invalid, then any subsequent actions are also void.
Actions To Notifications.
On receipt of a notification, an adjacent owner has three possible courses of action:.
- To grant the works going on as explained. A consenting Adjoining Owner retains all rights under the Act including the right to select a property surveyor later at the same time if there is a dispute at that stage.
- To dissent and designate a surveyor. The Act allows the Owners to concur in the appointment of a single ‘Agreed’ property surveyor or select their own separate surveyor.
- Issue a counter notification to set out specific conditions needed for the advantage of the Adjoining Owner. The Counter Notification ought to set out what additional or customized work the Adjoining Owner wish to be consisted of for his advantage.
Most of the times, if the adjoining does not react within 14 days then a considered conflict is said to have taken place and the person carrying out the work needs to designate a surveyor to act upon the adjacent owners behalf.
If adjacent owners provide composed consent to the works as set out within the notifications, then there is no disagreement to solve and no additional need for party wall surveyors or, undoubtedly, the Party Wall Act. Presuming work proceeds as detailed within the notification and no damage is triggered, then no more involvement is needed.
The surveyors then work together to concur the terms under which work might proceed. The property surveyor( s) will examine the strategies, notifications and structural details of the works and, after considering the impact of the works, will draw up an arrangement which sets out the terms under which work can be carried out (the Award).
The Party Wall Award.
The award will usually tape-record the condition of the appropriate part of adjacent property prior to work begins (this is not a requirement under the Act however is considered great practice and is properly provided by many excellent surveyors). The award may likewise grant access to both properties so that the works can be safely performed and the surveyor/s can check work in development.
Typically, the building owner who started the work pays for all expenditures of work and the affordable costs sustained by all celebrations as a result, this will include the surveyors charges for both Building Owner and Adjoining Owner.
We appreciate that many individuals wanting to carry out works on their property have the requirements of The Party Wall Act thrust upon at a fairly late stage in the pre-construction process. Here, Michael White C.Build.E MCABE MFPWS, one of our senior surveyors, provides his “newbies guide” which aims to provide a summary understanding of party walls and the requirements of the Party Wall Act …
What is the Party Wall Act?
The Party Wall etc Act 1996 provides a procedure to follow when building work involves a party wall or party fence wall, some excavations close to neighbouring structures, and new walls at borders. The Act allows owners to carry out certain specific works, including work to the full thickness of a party wall, whilst at the very same time safeguarding the interests of anyone else who might be affected by that work. Composed notification should be served on adjacent owners at least two months before beginning any party wall works (one month for works to the line of junction or excavations).
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