What is a Party Wall Award?
The process and requirements of a Party Wall Award are as set out in the Party Wall etc. Act 1996. A Party Wall Award is an arrangement made between a minimum of 2 neighbouring occupiers prior to the start of construction/building work which is to be carried out to a party limit or structure, or where works are being carried out in close proximity to a party limit or structure. There are three primary types of work which need a Party Wall Property surveyor to conduct a Party Wall Award and these are:
- Line of junction (building a brand-new wall on or alongside a boundary).
- Party Structure Functions (works to an existing party wall such as cutting into, reconstructing, thickening etc.).
- Nearby Excavation (excavations to a lower level within either 3m or 6m of an existing building).
In London and throughout the UK, our knowledgeable business building property surveyors perform a variety of professional surveying services including Party Wall Surveys (Party Wall Awards). At Commercial Structure Surveyors we carry out Party Wall Surveys by experienced and professional Party Wall Surveyors throughout the UK.
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.
How The Party Wall and so on.
In simplistic terms, the Party Wall etc. If the Adjacent Owners are pleased that the Building Owners’ proposed works will be of no trouble or, present no danger of damage to their home, the Adjoining Owners only require to verify, in composing, that they consent to the works and the Party Wall etc. The second phase would just be activated if the Adjoining Owners had any issues relating to the Building Owners’ propositions or picked to ignore the Notice served by the Structure Owners.
A disagreement would then be considered to have actually developed and, the structure provided by the Party Wall and so on. Act 1996 allows a resolution so that the Structure Owners might undertake works whilst supplying protection to both celebrations. At the point of a “conflict” having occurred, both the Building Owners and the Adjacent Owners have to designate a Party Wall Surveyor to proceed with fixing the conflict. This could be via separate surveyor visits or, by accepting a single surveyor, called the Agreed Surveyor.
Prior to any conflict emerging, Building Owners and Adjacent Owners do not necessarily need the services of a Party Wall Property Surveyor. The Party Wall Company are often commissioned to provide advice on the Act and to serve the relevant Party Wall Notices, ensuring they are legally valid.
What is a Party Wall Notification?
Structure Owners preparing to perform any of the works defined within the Party Wall and so on. Act 1996 have a legal commitment to serve written Notification on any Adjoining Owner who may be impacted by the Building Owners proposed works. There is no official design template for a Notice. Nevertheless, enough information of the proposed works, legal names of all Owners, and when the proposed works will begin are all important to guarantee the validity of the Notice.
The case of Lehmann vs Herman (1993) reveals the importance of serving a valid Notice. Mr and Mrs Lehmann and Mr and Mrs Herman owned adjacent properties. Mr Herman wished to repair 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 legitimate and argued that as both Mr and Mrs Herman would be regarded as Structure Owners under the Act, Mrs Herman must also be included on the Notification. The disagreement ended up in court and the judge agreed with the Lehmanns that the Notification was invalid.
What is a Party Wall Award?
A Party Wall Award is a lawfully binding document in between Building Owners and Adjacent Owners, which has been concurred by the appointed property surveyor( s), authorising the execution of building work in accordance with the Act. An Arrange of Condition study of the Adjoining Owners home, although not a particular requirement of the Party Wall etc. Act 1996, is customary and forms a reference file within the Award.
I Currently Have Preparation Approval And/ Or Building Control Approval. Do I Still Need To Follow The Party Wall Act?
If your planned works would be considered notifiable under the Party Wall Act then yes, you would have to follow the treatments set out within the Act. No Regional Authority consent or approval would get rid of the legal commitment 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 strong structure that sits astride a limit and not becoming part of a structure. Therefore, any works to such walls that would be considered notifiable under the Party Wall Act would also apply to Party Fence Walls. Wood fencing, precast concrete posts with infill panel fencing, etc would not be considered to be a Party Fence Wall, whether astride a boundary or not.
If the Adjoining Owners are satisfied that the Building Owners’ proposed works will be of no trouble or, present no risk of damage to their residential or commercial property, the Adjoining Owners only require to confirm, in writing, that they consent to the works and the Party Wall and so on. At the point of a “conflict” having developed, both the Building Owners and the Adjoining Owners have to designate a Party Wall Surveyor to proceed with resolving the conflict. The Party Wall Company are frequently commissioned to offer suggestions on the Act and to serve the appropriate Party Wall Notices, ensuring they are legally legitimate. A Party Wall Award is a lawfully binding file in between Structure Owners and Adjoining Owners, which has been agreed by the designated property surveyor( s), authorising the execution of structure work in accordance with the Act. Any works to such walls that would be considered notifiable under the Party Wall Act would likewise use to Party Fence Walls.
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