What is a Party Wall Award?
The procedure and requirements of a Party Wall Award are as set out in the Party Wall etc. Act 1996. A Party Wall Award is an agreement made in between a minimum of 2 neighbouring occupiers prior to the beginning of construction/building work which is to be undertaken to a party boundary or structure, or where works are being undertaken in close proximity to a party limit or structure. There are 3 main types of work which require a Party Wall Surveyor to conduct a Party Wall Award and these are:
- Line of junction (constructing a brand-new wall on or along with a border).
- Party Structure Functions (works to an existing party wall such as cutting into, rebuilding, thickening and so on).
- Nearby Excavation (excavations to a lower level within either 3m or 6m of an existing building).
In London and throughout the UK, our knowledgeable commercial structure property surveyors carry out a range of professional surveying services consisting of Party Wall Surveys (Party Wall Awards). At Commercial Building Surveyors we perform Party Wall Surveys by expert and experienced Party Wall Surveyors throughout the UK.
Party Wall (WikiPedia)
A party wall (periodically parti-wall or parting wall surface, also understood as typical wall surface or as a demising wall) is a separating dividers in between two adjoining structures that is shared by the occupants of each home or service. Normally, the contractor lays the wall along a residential property line splitting two terraced houses, to ensure that one fifty percent of the wall surface’s thickness rests on each side. This sort of wall is generally structural. Celebration wall surfaces can also be developed by 2 abutting wall surfaces constructed at different times. The term can be also made use of to define a division in between different systems within a multi-unit house complex. Really usually the wall in this instance is non-structural however developed to meet established criteria for sound and/or fire security, i.e. a firewall program.
The Party Wall Act 1996
as it impacts the garden
At first sight, it is simple to believe that the 1996 Party Wall Act does not affect garden building and construction, however it does impact the construction of border walls even if not part of buildings and can also applies to deep excavations.
The Party Wall Act 1996 came into force in 1997, so it is now law and gives you rights and obligations whichever the side of the ‘wall’ you are on i.e. whether you are planning/doing work on a relevant structure or if your neighbour is.
The Party Wall Act does not apply to limit fences.
The Party Wall Act does not impact any requirement for Preparation Authorization for any work undertaken. Having Preparation Authorization does not negate the requirements under the Party Wall Act.
The Party Wall Act enters into effect if someone is planning to do work on an appropriate structure, for the functions of the Act ‘party wall’ does not just imply the wall between 2 semi-detached properties, as far as gardeners are worried it covers:
- A garden wall, where the wall is astride the boundary line (or butts up against it) and is used to separate the residential or commercial properties however is not part of any building.
- Excavation near to a neighbouring property.
For details of how the Party Wall Act impacts building work in general, take a look at this page.
Similar to all work impacting neighbours, it is constantly better to reach a friendly arrangement rather than turn to any law. Even where the work needs a notice to be served, it is much better to informally go over the designated work, think about the neighbours remarks, and amend your strategies (if suitable) prior to serving the notice.
What garden work requires a notification and approval.
The basic principle of the Party Wall Act is that all work which may have a result upon the structural strength or assistance function of the party wall or might trigger damage to the neighbouring side of the wall need to be notified. If in doubt, recommendations needs to be sought from a regional Structure Control Office or professional surveyor/architect.
Work in the garden covered by the Party Wall Act include:
- To rebuild/build a party and/or destroy boundary wall.
- To increase the height or thickness of a party boundary wall.
- Excavations within 3 metres of a neighbouring structure where the excavation will go listed below the bottom of the structures of the neighbouring structure.
- Excavations within 6 metres of a neighbouring building where the excavation will go below a line drawn 45 ° downwards from the bottom of the foundations of the neighbouring structure.
A notice should be issued to all impacted neighbouring celebrations if the planned work on a border wall falls under the Party Wall Act. The notice needs to include (see sample letters in Part 5 of the Party Wall brochure):.
- The owners of the residential or commercial property carrying out the work.
- The address of the home.
- A full description of the proposed work (this will generally be simply a single sentence detailing the work).
- The proposed start date for the work.
- A clear statement that the notice is being served under The Party Wall etc Act 1996.
- The date the notification is being served.
- If the work involves excavations, a drawing showing the depth, position and so on
If the prepared work is a brand-new limit wall as much as or astride the limit line the procedure of serving a notification under the Party Wall Act is as follows:.
- The person meaning to carry out the work needs to serve a written notice a minimum of one months prior to the desired start of the work to every neighbouring party providing information of the work to be carried out.
- Each neighbouring party must react in writing offering consent or registering dissent – if a neighbouring party not does anything within 2 week of getting the notice, the result is to put the notification into dispute. However no formal contract is needed for a wall approximately the border line, the neighbour just needs not to object in composing.
- No work may begin on a wall astride the boundary line up until all neighbouring celebrations have agreed in writing to the notice (or a revised notice).
See listed below regarding what occurs in the event of a dispute/objection.
If the prepared work is an excavation within the distance/depth covered by the Party Wall Act, the notification needs to be served a minimum of one month before the planned start day of the work. Neighbouring celebrations must provide written contract within 14 days or a conflict is deemed to have actually taken place.
See listed below regarding what happens in case of a dispute/objection.
What occurs if a dispute arises.
If agreement can not be reached between neighbouring parties, the process is as follows:.
- A Surveyor or Surveyors is/are appointed to figure out a unbiased and reasonable Award, either:.
- A single ‘Agreed Property surveyor’ (somebody acceptable to all parties).
- Each party designates their own Surveyor to represent the private parties.
The person who is carrying out the work will usually have to pay all the costs of the Surveyors, the only exception being if the neighbour calls out a Surveyor unnecessarily – in the opinion of the Property surveyor. It needs to be kept in mind that any Property surveyor needs to act within their statutory obligations and propose a fair and neutral Award.
- A single ‘Agreed Property surveyor’ (somebody acceptable to all parties).
- The Agreed Property surveyor, or the private Surveyors collectively, will produce an Award which needs to be neutral and reasonable to all parties.
- When an Award has actually been made, all parties have 14 days to attract a County Court versus the Award.
As soon as you have agreement.
All work should comply with the notice once you have contract. All the arrangements ought to be maintained to make sure that a record of the granted permission is kept; a subsequent buyer of the home may wish to develop that the work was performed in accordance with the Party Wall Act requirements.
Keep in mind:
- We have actually only offered a brief summary of the Party Wall Act here as it affects garden work but have a look at the Neighborhoods and City government website for a more detailed explanatory pamphlet consisting of example letters for reactions and notifications.
- Going over intended deal with neighbours is free and can avoid misconception which might emerge if a notice arrives all of a sudden.
- Your regional Structure Control Workplace may be able to provide free guidance regarding the Party Wall Act and how it applies to particular circumstances.
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