About to undertake home improvements? Our Party Wall Surveyors can tell you if the work is covered by The Party Wall Act 1996
The team of Party Wall Surveyors at Antino and Associates is directed by Roy Antino. His brother, Philip, is a leading expert and published author on The Party Wall etc. act 1996 and Neighbourly Matters. He and his team can and will travel around the UK; specifically the south east, London and surrounding counties.
If you or your neighbour are about to undertake home improvements, it’s important to find out whether the work is covered by The Party Wall etc. Act 1996. Speak to a Party Wall Surveyor to find out.
It is necessary to understand whether or not this legislation is relevant to the work that you or your neighbour is planning to undertake prior to any work taking place. Failure to act could result in you receiving a massive bill, as well as causing an unnecessary rift between your neighbours. Speak to one of our party wall surveyors to find out if they need to obtain a Party Wall Notice.
Are party wall notices compulsory? YES!
A building owner has to give two months written notice on building works which affect a party wall or boundary, or one month’s notice for excavations. Failure to serve a party wall notice could become very problematic and costly to resolve where a breach has occurred. A Party Wall Surveyor can explain what to do if there has been a breach.
What is the Party Wall etc. Act 1996?
The Party Wall etc. Act 1996 is, an enabling Act to make provision in respect of works to the party wall/structure, and construction of new walls on the boundary, and includes excavations in proximity to certain buildings or structures; and for connected purposes.’ In other words, it is an Act that protects the party walls, boundary walls and buildings that are either adjoining or in close proximity to where the work is being undertaken.
What is a party wall?
There are three distinct types of party walls:
a wall that stands on the lands of two (or more) owners and may also form part of two buildings - this wall can be part of one building only or two buildings belonging to different owners. This is a type (a)* party wall.
a wall that stands on the lands of two owners but does not form part of a building, such as a garden wall but not including timber fences. This is a party fence wall.
a wall that is on one owner’s land but is used by two (or more) owners to separate their buildings. This is type (b)* party wall.
*This is to do with the type of Statutory Notice you should receive.
What does the Party Wall Act cover?
People often ask:
Do I need a party wall agreement for a loft conversion?
Do I need a party wall agreement for a new roof?
Do I need a party wall agreement for an extension?
Does the party wall act apply to conservatories?
Does the party wall act apply to fences?
Does the party wall act apply to garden walls?
Does the party wall act apply to loft conversions?
Does the party wall act cover roofs?
It is highly probable that your works will require Notice under the Act. Give our party wall surveyors a call and describe the project you want to undertake and they can quickly advise if you need to serve Notice or not.
The Party Wall Act covers:
Erecting a new building on a wall, on or across the boundary of two properties
Doing work to an existing party wall or party structure
Excavating near to and below the foundation level of neighbour’s property
Excavating below the foundation level of an adjoining property or structure (patios, drains, gutters)
Building a new wall on or at the boundary of two properties
Demolishing and rebuilding a party wall
Raising a party wall or reducing its height
Cutting into a party wall
Removing chimney breasts from a party wall
What is the role of a Party Wall Surveyor?
The Party Wall Surveyors' role is to ensure that the building work that is being carried out fully complies with the Act and protects the adjoining property from structural damage, inconvenience, and nuisance.
Why is it important to appoint a Party Wall Surveyor?
Your rights are only protected if you appoint a Party Wall Surveyor. If you fail to do so, or view the appointment as an unnecessary cost, you will expose yourself to significantly greater costs and potential litigation when your dream extension hits a problem. Call our Party Wall Surveyors now to find out what you need to do.
My neighbour is planning to extend, do I need to hire a Party Wall Surveyor?
Once your neighbour has confirmed that the works are definitely going ahead, you should receive formal notice, which would have been instructed by their party wall surveyor. If the work that is to take place is near or on shared land, you will need our Party Wall services regarding the work that is to take place. Antino and Associates has a team of expert party wall surveyors who can smoothly guide you through the statutory obligations.
What if works go ahead and I receive no formal notice from my neighbour?
Building without party wall agreement is not allowed. If your neighbour fails to serve any of the section 1, 2, 3 or 6 notices this will give rise for you, as the Adjoining Owner, to obtain an injunction and force the Building Owner to stop the works until they have complied with their statutory duties. An injunction can have profound financial consequences for the Building Owner, so it is important that the correct advice is obtained, from a party wall surveyor, before the commencement of the works.
You should receive a formal letter, or Statutory Notice, for the following:
Prepare and serve Section 1 building a new wall on, or across, the line of junction
Prepare and serve Section 2 boundary wall
Prepare and serve Section 2 Party fence wall
Prepare and serve Section 2 External wall
Prepare and serve Section 3 Party Structure Notices
Prepare and serve Section 4 counter Notices
Prepare and serve Section 6(1) 3m notices for excavations
Prepare and serve Section 6(2) 6m notices for excavations
Prepare and serve Section 10(4) Notices
Prepare and serve Section 10(8) Notices
Prepare and serve section 10(1) (a) Party Wall Awards
Prepare and serve section 10(1) (b) Party Wall Awards
Prepare and serve Third Surveyor Party Wall Awards
Section 10 (11) advice
Section 12(1) advice
We have plans for a wrap-around extension – what should we do next?
If your architect has drawn up plans of your home improvements, your next step will be to appoint a Party Wall Surveyor so you should contact us. Once appointed, our expert Party Wall Surveyors will manage the whole process. Upon receipt of the project drawings we will provide initial advice and explain your statutory duties as the Building Owner in a report. This report will outline, step-by-step, what notices should be served and upon whom.
Part of our role as your Party Wall Surveyor will be to deal with the adjoining owners and/or their appointed surveyor and to produce the Party Wall Award. Our professional and efficient service will ensure that all parties are satisfied in a timely manner and that works get underway as quickly as possible without fear of an injunction or breaching the Act.
The role of our Party Wall Surveyors
Antino and Associates Party Wall Surveyors will accept appointments and selections as:
Adjoining Owners Surveyor
Building Owners Surveyor
We will guide you through the complicated statutory obligations, whether you are the Building Owner undertaking certain building works, or the Adjoining Owner entitled to notice prior to the commencement of the works.
Who pays for a party wall surveyor?
The Act adopts the general view that the Building Owner (the person undertaking the work) should pay the reasonable costs incurred by the Adjoining Owner for a party wall surveyor. This is reinforced under s.10 (12) & (13) of the Act.
What should I do if I receive a party wall notice?
Under the statutory legislation, the cost of appointing your own Party Wall Surveyor is generally recoverable from the Building Owner. If you receive a notice from the Building Owner you should immediately contact Antino and Associates for an initial no-obligation discussion regarding your statutory rights.
How much does a party wall surveyor cost?
Our cost for a party wall agreement is highly competitive. You will always deal with an experienced and professional Party Wall Surveyor that is able to understand and interpret your needs within the remit of the Party Wall Act etc. 1996.
Pre-construction advice reports start from £175, without further obligation.
Party Wall notices can be prepared and served from £75 per adjoining (neighbouring owner) property.
Party Wall fees start from £900.
Free 15 minute telephone advice on receipt of Notice.
Beware of Ambulance Chasers
As an Adjoining Owner, it is inevitable that you will be contacted by ‘Ambulance Chasers’. This term is used to describe organisations, (some of which operate under the banner of the Chartered Association of Building Engineers), who seek out individuals who are planning to undertake building work. These companies monitor Local Authority Planning Applications. Their purpose is to see which property owners are seeking approval of their plans and then write to the Adjoining Owner with the intention of painting a very bleak picture of the consequences of the proposed work. Their goal is to direct people into appointing them based on their fear of the unknown.
Those of us that operate a professional practice frown upon this conduct, as it's unethical. We strongly advise against using a company that operates in this manner and advise that they should be avoided at all times.