What is a Party Wall Award?
A Party Wall Award is a contract made in between at least 2 neighbouring occupiers prior to the commencement of construction/building work which is to be undertaken to a party boundary or structure, or where works are being carried out in close proximity to a party limit or structure. There are 3 primary types of work which require a Party Wall Property surveyor to conduct a Party Wall Award and these are:
- Line of junction (building a new wall on or along with a limit).
- Party Structure Works (works to an existing party wall such as cutting into, reconstructing, thickening etc.).
- Surrounding Excavation (excavations to a lower level within either 3m or 6m of an existing building).
In London and across the UK, our skilled commercial structure surveyors carry out a range of professional surveying services including Party Wall Surveys (Party Wall Awards). At Commercial Building Surveyors we conduct Party Wall Studies by knowledgeable and professional Party Wall Surveyors throughout the UK.
Party Wall (WikiPedia)
A party wall (periodically parti-wall or parting wall surface, likewise called common wall or as a demising wall) is a splitting partition between two adjoining structures that is shared by the owners of each home or organization. Usually, the builder lays the wall along a residential property line separating two terraced residences, to make sure that one half of the wall’s density exists on each side. This type of wall is usually structural. Party wall surfaces can also be created by two abutting wall surfaces constructed at different times. The term can be also made use of to define a division in between separate systems within a multi-unit apartment or condo facility. Very commonly the wall in this situation is non-structural yet designed to meet well established criteria for sound and/or fire security, i.e. a firewall program.
How The Party Wall etc.
Act 1996 Functions In simplistic terms, the Party Wall and so on. Act 1996 can be split into two stages; firstly the Notifying Phase and second of all, if needed, the Disputed Phase. The first stage is where the Structure Owners have a legal obligation to serve an official Notification detailing the proposed works upon the Adjacent Owners. If the Adjoining Owners are pleased that the Building Owners’ proposed works will be of no inconvenience or, pose no hazard of damage to their property, the Adjoining Owners just need to confirm, in composing, that they consent to the works and the Party Wall etc. Act 1996 could end there. The 2nd phase would just be activated if the Adjoining Owners had any issues relating to the Building Owners’ propositions or picked to disregard the Notification served by the Structure Owners.
A conflict would then be deemed to have actually occurred and, the framework provided by the Party Wall and so on. Act 1996 makes it possible for a resolution so that the Structure Owners might carry out works whilst offering security to both parties. At the point of a “conflict” having occurred, both the Building Owners and the Adjoining Owners need to select a Party Wall Surveyor to proceed with fixing the disagreement. This could be through different surveyor consultations or, by consenting to a single surveyor, called the Agreed Property surveyor.
Prior to any dispute developing, Structure Owners and Adjoining Owners do not always need the services of a Party Wall Surveyor. The Party Wall Business are typically commissioned to provide suggestions on the Act and to serve the pertinent Party Wall Notices, guaranteeing they are legally valid.
What is a Party Wall Notification?
Building Owners preparing to carry out any of the works defined within the Party Wall and so on. Act 1996 have a legal obligation to serve written Notice on any Adjoining Owner who may be affected by the Structure Owners proposed works. There is no official template for a Notification. Nevertheless, adequate detail of the proposed works, legal names of all Owners, and when the proposed works will start are all critical to make sure the validity of the Notification.
The case of Lehmann vs Herman (1993) reveals the significance of serving a valid Notification. Mr and Mrs Lehmann and Mr and Mrs Herman owned adjoining homes. Mr Herman wanted to fix the Party Fence Wall that divided the two gardens and served a Notification on Mr and Mrs Lehmann. As Mr Herman just served the Notification in his name, Mr and Mrs Lehmann refused to accept the Notification as being valid and argued that as both Mr and Mrs Herman would be related to as Structure Owners under the Act, Mrs Herman need to likewise be consisted of on the Notice. The disagreement wound up in court and the judge agreed with the Lehmanns that the Notice was invalid.
What is a Party Wall Award?
A Party Wall Award is a legally binding document between Building Owners and Adjacent Owners, which has actually been agreed by the designated property surveyor( s), authorising the execution of structure work in accordance with the Act. A Schedule of Condition study of the Adjoining Owners residential or commercial property, although not a particular requirement of the Party Wall and so on. Act 1996, is customary and forms a reference file within the Award.
I Currently Have Planning Approval And/ Or Building Control Approval. Do I Still Required To Follow The Party Wall Act?
The Party Wall etc. Act 1996 is an absolutely different piece of statute legislation to the Town and Country Planning Act 1990 or the Structure Act 1984. If your prepared works would be deemed notifiable under the Party Wall Act then yes, you would have to follow the treatments set out within the Act. No Regional Authority approval or approval would get rid of the legal obligation to serve a Party Wall Notification upon your neighbour( s).
Does The Party Wall Act Cover Garden Fences?
The Act does cover “Party Fence Walls” which are considered to be a wall of solid structure that sits astride a limit and not belonging to a building. Therefore, any works to such walls that would be considered notifiable under the Party Wall Act would likewise apply to Party Fence Walls. Timber fencing, precast concrete posts with infill panel fencing, etc would not be considered to be a Party Fence Wall, whether astride a limit or not.
If the Adjacent Owners are satisfied that the Building Owners’ proposed works will be of no inconvenience or, present no risk of damage to their home, the Adjoining Owners only need to confirm, in writing, that they consent to the works and the Party Wall etc. At the point of a “disagreement” having developed, both the Building Owners and the Adjoining Owners have to select a Party Wall Property surveyor to proceed with solving the conflict. The Party Wall Business are typically commissioned to supply advice on the Act and to serve the appropriate Party Wall Notices, ensuring they are legally legitimate. A Party Wall Award is a lawfully binding document in between Structure Owners and Adjoining Owners, which has been agreed by the designated property surveyor( s), authorising the execution of building work in accordance with the Act. Any works to such walls that would be deemed notifiable under the Party Wall Act would also use to Party Fence Walls.
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