The term “party wall” includes the following:
The Party Wall Act 1996 was passed to discourage such conflicts. It points out a procedure by which a building owner planning to conduct construction on a party wall must notify the adjacent landowner by presenting a written warning two months before beginning work (‘junction line’ and excavation works only require a one-month notice period).
Any structural work that impacts the roof, floor or party walls will require direct consent from someone who lives above, below and/or adjacent to you. The easiest way is to speak in person to your neighbour and explain the job you plan to do to address any concerns in advance. That way, you can probably get the written agreement you need to commence. And, even if the work desperately needs to be undertaken for safety purposes, you cannot compel a property owner to give their signed consent.
So, if you can do it yourself, why have Party Wall Surveyors serve these Notices?
Party Wall Surveyors specialise in solving problems that exist under the Party Wall, 1996 Statute. They are well versed in complex pieces of law and have the ability to resolve these issues amicably to reach an agreement. Further, Party Wall Surveyors will inevitably become involved, since a building owner may not act as their own surveyor.
In addition, notices which are inaccurately served by owners have to be re-served correctly by an appointed Party Wall Surveyor, adding to confusion, delays and increasing costs.
Therefore, Party Wall Surveyors have a duty of care for both parties and must act independently under the Act. The surveyors are there to apply the terms of the Act by the rights of the owners. They may not diverge from the content within the Act and must guarantee that everyone is treated fairly.
Party Wall Notices are simple to those who serve them every day and very confusing to those who are unfamiliar with them. We would advise that you always appoint a surveyor to serve a Party Wall Notice as they are specialists in Party Wall matters, and will ensure each party has a clear structure in which to obtain permission and resolve disputes, swiftly and cost-effectively.
Parallel Consultancy have extensive professional experience of all party wall related matters in London, Surrey, Essex and surrounding areas. Contact us to discuss your building plans and how best to navigate the legislation so that your interests, as well as those of your adjoining neighbours, are properly protected.
Our Party Wall Surveyors always aim to remain impartial. See what our Party Wall Service entails.