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 a contract made in between a minimum of 2 neighbouring occupiers prior to the beginning of construction/building work which is to be carried out to a party border or structure, or where works are being carried out in close proximity to a party boundary or structure. There are three main types of work which need a Party Wall Property surveyor to conduct a Party Wall Award and these are:
- Line of junction (developing 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).
- Adjacent Excavation (excavations to a lower level within either 3m or 6m of an existing building).
In London and throughout the UK, our experienced business structure surveyors perform a variety of professional surveying services consisting of Party Wall Studies (Party Wall Awards). At Commercial Structure Surveyors we conduct Party Wall Studies by knowledgeable and professional Party Wall Surveyors throughout the UK.
Party Wall (WikiPedia)
A party wall (sometimes parti-wall or parting wall surface, also referred to as typical wall or as a demising wall surface) is a separating partition in between 2 adjoining structures that is shared by the owners of each house or business. Normally, the contractor lays the wall along a residential property line separating two terraced residences, to ensure that one half of the wall’s thickness rests on each side. This sort of wall surface is usually architectural. Celebration walls can also be developed by two abutting wall surfaces built at various times. The term can be likewise used to describe a department between separate devices within a multi-unit house complicated. Extremely commonly the wall surface in this case is non-structural yet created to meet well-known criteria for sound and/or fire defense, i.e. a firewall.
The Party Wall Act 1996
as it effects the garden
At first sight, it is simple to think that the 1996 Party Wall Act does not affect garden building and construction, nevertheless it does affect the construction of border walls even if not part of buildings and can also applies to deep excavations.
The Party Wall Act 1996 entered 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 an appropriate structure or if your neighbour is.
The Party Wall Act does not apply to boundary fences.
The Party Wall Act does not affect any requirement for Preparation Approval for any work carried out. Having Preparation Authorization does not negate the requirements under the Party Wall Act.
The Party Wall Act enters into impact if someone is planning to do deal with a pertinent structure, for the functions of the Act ‘party wall’ does not just mean the wall between 2 semi-detached homes, as far as garden enthusiasts are concerned 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 home.
For information of how the Party Wall Act impacts building work in basic, take a look at this page.
As with all work affecting neighbours, it is constantly better to reach a friendly agreement instead of resort to any law. Even where the work requires a notification to be served, it is much better to informally discuss the intended work, consider the neighbours remarks, and amend your plans (if appropriate) before serving the notification.
What garden work requires a notification and permission.
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 may trigger damage to the neighbouring side of the wall should be informed. Guidance ought to be sought from a regional Structure Control Office or professional surveyor/architect if in doubt.
Work in the garden covered by the Party Wall Act consist of:
- To rebuild/build a party and/or demolish border wall.
- To increase the height or density of a party border wall.
- Excavations within 3 metres of a neighbouring building where the excavation will go listed below the bottom of the structures of the neighbouring building.
- Excavations within 6 metres of a neighbouring structure where the excavation will go listed below a line drawn 45 ° downwards from the bottom of the foundations of the neighbouring structure.
A notice needs to be released to all affected neighbouring parties if the planned work on a border wall falls under the Party Wall Act. The notice must consist of (see sample letters in Part 5 of the Party Wall brochure):.
- The owners of the property carrying out the work.
- The address of the home.
- A complete description of the proposed work (this will usually be just 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 includes excavations, a drawing showing the depth, position and so on
If the planned work is a brand-new boundary wall up to or astride the limit line the process of serving a notification under the Party Wall Act is as follows:.
- The person planning to carry out the work should serve a written notification at least one months before the intended start of the work to every neighbouring party providing information of the work to be performed.
- Each neighbouring party needs to respond in writing giving permission or signing up dissent – if a neighbouring party does nothing within 2 week of receiving the notice, the impact is to put the notification into conflict. No formal agreement is required for a wall up to the limit line, the neighbour simply requires not to object in composing.
- No work might start on a wall astride the border line till all neighbouring celebrations have concurred in writing to the notice (or a revised notification).
See 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 requires to be served a minimum of one month before the prepared start day of the work. Neighbouring parties must offer written agreement within 2 week or a conflict is deemed to have happened.
See below regarding what happens in the event of a dispute/objection.
If a disagreement develops, what takes place.
If agreement can not be reached in between neighbouring celebrations, the procedure is as follows:.
- A Surveyor or Surveyors is/are appointed to figure out a unbiased and reasonable Award, either:.
- A single ‘Concurred Property surveyor’ (someone acceptable to all celebrations).
- Each party designates their own Surveyor to represent the individual celebrations.
The individual who is performing the work will typically have to pay all the expenses of the Surveyors, the only exception being if the neighbour calls out a Property surveyor needlessly – in the viewpoint of the Property surveyor. It should be kept in mind that any Property surveyor needs to act within their statutory obligations and propose a fair and objective Award.
- A single ‘Concurred Property surveyor’ (someone acceptable to all celebrations).
- The Agreed Surveyor, or the private Surveyors collectively, will produce an Award which must be fair and unbiased to all celebrations.
- As soon as an Award has been made, all parties have 2 week to attract a County Court versus the Award.
When you have contract.
When you have agreement, all work should abide by the notification. All the arrangements ought to be retained to make sure that a record of the granted permission is kept; a subsequent buyer of the home might want to develop that the work was carried out in accordance with the Party Wall Act requirements.
- We have actually just given a quick overview of the Party Wall Act here as it affects garden work however take a look at the Neighborhoods and City government website for a more detailed explanatory pamphlet including example letters for responses and notices.
- Discussing desired work with neighbours is complimentary and can avoid misunderstanding which might develop if a notice gets here suddenly.
- Your regional Building Control Workplace may be able to offer free guidance relating to the Party Wall Act and how it applies to particular situations.
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