Party Wall Agreements
Building Owners Surveyor
If you are proposing to undertake any of the following works then the Party Wall Act applies:
- The excavation of ground to install foundations
- The construction of a new wall on the boundary you share with your neighbour
- Any works to a wall shared with your neighbour such as the insertion of beams to support a loft conversion or the removal of a chimney breast
- The excavation to form basement/subterranean accommodation
- The raising of a wall shared between you and your neighbour
- Underpinning of a party wall
- Structural Repairs to a party wall
- Cutting into a wall to insert a flashing or weatherproofing
Party Wall Notice
This legislation states that you must serve a Party Wall Notice on your neighbour. And proscribes how this should be done and what information should be supplied. In addition, if your serving a notice with reference to the creations of foundations. Then you must append suitable drawings and sections showing as a minimum the type depth and location of any proposed foundation.
There is nowhere in the legislation that prohibits you from serving your notices yourself. And we provide some DIY Party Wall Templates to do just that. But we can also draft legal, compliant notice for you and we charge £65 for a single notice or £130 for more than one per individual address. If we draft his important document for you you will not have the costly issues of having to reserve notice or wasting additional time. If the documents are deemed to contain errors.
Above all, there are three types of party wall notice namely a Line of Junction Notice, Party Structure Notice and Section 6 Notice. The circumstances under which may be served are detailed below:
Section 1 Notice / Line of Junction Notice
If you are planning to build a new wall either as a Party Wall. Or a Party fence wall (astride a boundary) subject to your neighbour’s consent or up to the line of junction and wholly on your own land, a Section 1 Notice must be served.
Section 3 Notice / Party Structure Notice
If you are planning to cut into a Party Wall to insert flashings or a damp proof course, cut away chimney breasts or projections, raise, rebuild repair, underpin, expose the Party Wall to the weather or enclose upon a wall on or at the line of junction turning it into a Party Wall, in such cases a Section 3 Notice must be served
Section 6 Notice / Notice of Adjacent Excavation:
If you are planning to excavate within 3m of neighbour’s foundations to a lower depth, or within 6m to a lower depth than a line struck at 45 degrees down from the underside of the neighbour’s foundations, then a section 6 notice must be served.
The Party Wall Process – Doing Building Work
Your Neighbors Option upon receipt of your party wall notice:
- Consent to your proposals. If this is the case then, from a party wall perspective, your obligations are complete and there is nothing further to do and nothing further to pay.
- Consent to your proposals, subject to us undertaking a Schedule of Condition of their property. This Schedule of Condition is a written and photographic record of the condition of their property prior to you commencing your proposed works. This protects your neighbour in that we should be able to easily identify damage following your development being completed that was not there at the outset. It also protects you against a claim from your neighbour to repair pre-existing damage that your development did not cause.
- Dissent your proposals and in such circumstances, a dispute is deemed to have arisen and your neighbour agrees to our appointment as the agreed surveyor of the parties. In such circumstances, we would undertake a site inspection and schedule of condition and then draft and serve upon the parties a Party Wall Award which would authorise the works that you are proposing to undertake.
- Dissent your proposals and in such circumstances, a dispute is deemed to have arisen and your neighbour appoints their own surveyor. In such circumstances, ourselves and your neighbour’s surveyor would undertake a site visit and schedule of condition and then together agree upon the content of a Party Wall Award which would then be served upon the parties authorising the works you wish to undertake.
- Ignore the notice. Occasionally a neighbour will simply ignore the notice. In such circumstances, they will be sent a further reminder, 14 days after the initial notice was served. This second notice will give them a period of 10 days within which to appoint a surveyor. In the event that they do not then we, as your surveyor, would make an appointment on their behalf. Once the second surveyor is in place then matters would proceed with an appointment being made on there behalf above as if they had appointed that surveyor.
Ok, so I’ve appointed Party Wall Surveyor(s) then what happens?
There are technical elements of the Act which need to be undertaken like appointing the third surveyor and checking each other’s appointments.
Once this is completed the Surveyor(s) will review the proposed works and arrange a site inspection to view the site and understanding the proposed work at the same time they will carry out a schedule of condition on your neighbour’s property to record its current condition before the commencement of the proposed works.
Once the schedule has been created and agreed your surveyor will draft a Party Wall Award and send it to the other surveyor for comment if there are two appointed surveyors. If there is only an agreed surveyor and once the award has been finalised it will be bound signed and served on you both. Increasingly we are working with our digital platform to serve Party Wall Awards, as long as suitable permission is obtained from all owners this makes it faster and cheaper for you as there are no postage or printing costs.
Now you’ve served the award can my work begin?
Once served you have every legal right to begin words immediately once you have received the Party Wall award from your surveyor but the parties to any award have 14 days in which they are allowed to challenge the award in the county court. It is always our advice that you don’t begin work within this 14 day period but you can as you wish to.
So how much does this all cost and do I have to pay for everyone’s surveyor?
We offer a fixed fee for our works with regard to almost all residential work the only real exception being basement works and some underpinning works where additional time is needed to deal with structural engineers and designers. Our standard domestic party wall fees start at £860 per neighbouring property.
Please complete the below form to get a fixed fee quote for your work or call 01227 806334
It is very likely that as you are the one getting the benefit from the works you will be the one that has to pay for your neighbour’s costs if they appoint their own surveyor if they appoint us you will only pay our agreed surveyor fees.
Need Help….Still have questions about your work…. Why not complete the below form tell us a little bit about your work and we will get back to you to answer your question alternatively you can ring for a free no-obligation Party Wall Advice.
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