The Party Wall etc Act 1996

Relevant works to party walls and excavations close to neighbouring buildings, foundations and boundaries are governed by the Party Wall etc Act 1996. This can apply to commercial, Industrial and residential developments. Also very common for semi detached of terraced properties during loft, rear, side and basement extensions. The Party Wall etc Act 1996 legislation only deals with notifiable aspect of the building works and is separate from Planning Permission and Building Regulations.

Building owners are quite often unaware of the Act and procedures. It is a legal requirement and written notice must be served by a building owner for relevant works and where an adjoining owner dissents to a notice the two owners have to either agree the appointment of a surveyor or each appoint a surveyor, to resolve the matters in dispute. The surveyors would then review the drawings, carry out a schedule of condition, prepare an Award document outlining the rights and obligations of the parties. The Award would include the proposed drawings and generally deal with manner of the works, inconvenience, compensation for damage, amongst other items. It is important to appoint an experienced professional surveyor who has an excellent working knowledge of the Party Wall etc Act 1996.

On the other hand, when an adjoining owner consents to the notice, the building owner can start the works without any Surveyors involvement at the outset. It is important that a valid notice is served in order for both owners to have rights under the Party Wall etc Act 1996. Therefore where applicable it is advisable to seek verification from an experienced qualified surveyor before starting any building works.

We can act as Surveyor  for adjoining owners who have been served with a notice, or building owners carrying out work. We can also also be the Agreed Surveyor acting impartially for both parties.


Do contact us to discuss your requirements and you can scan and email any notice you have received.

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