Our Chartered Surveyors in Croydon offer expertise and guidance when it comes to neighbouring property agreements, especially those affected by the Party Wall Act 1996. With our expert advice at hand, you’re sure to have a better understanding of how this important legislation affects your property development plans.
The Party Wall etc. Act 1996 provides a key agreement for structures and walls to be worked on between properties, making it a critical step for property development — even if only minor changes are taking place.
Any work on a neighboured property requires the express permission of both building owners and adjoining homeowners, also known as a party wall agreement. Such formal agreement must be obtained in writing, covering all details regarding potential remedial measures or future improvements that may arise throughout the duration of your project – Get in touch for lading party wall surveys in Croydon.
Under the stipulations of the Party Wall Act, if you are a property owner in Croydon, it’s essential for you to serve notice prior to commencing construction work on a shared wall or near your property’s boundary.
You are required to inform your neighbours if you plan to execute any of the following:
1). Erection of new walls up to, or across, the line of junction.
2). Undertaking operations directly on a Party Wall, Party Structure, or Party Fence Wall.
3). Performing excavations within 3m or 6m to a depth that falls beneath the foundations or structures of the adjacent owner.
For a smoother execution, it’s recommended to engage with your neighbours before serving the notice. Generally, neighbours who feel they are consulted are less inclined to immediately hire a separate surveyor.
A Party Wall Notice in Croydon is an official declaration issued by the ‘Building Owner’, who intends to conduct the construction work. This notice can be dispatched by the Surveyor of the Building Owner. The Party Wall Notice allows the ‘Adjoining Owner’ to choose from one of three possible responses:
1. Consent to the Party Wall Notice.
By consenting, the adjoining owner still maintains the protections accorded by the Party Wall Act, enabling the building owner to go ahead with the proposed construction work without requiring additional Awards. In such cases, we highly recommend implementing a Schedule of Condition to ensure the protection of all parties.
2. Dissent and Appoint a Party Wall Surveyor to Act on My Behalf.
If the adjoining owner dissents to the Party Wall Notice, they activate the formal procedures and protections encapsulated in the Party Wall Act. If they decide to appoint their own Party Wall Surveyor, it compels the building owner to do the same. The two chosen Party Wall Surveyors will then abide by the set procedures and reach a consensus on a Party Wall Award.
3. Dissent and Appoint an Agreed Party Wall Surveyor.
This choice mirrors the second response to the Party Wall Notice, with the sole distinction being that a single Party Wall Surveyor acts impartially on behalf of both parties involved
A Party Wall stands astride the boundary of land belonging to two or more owners and either:
– Forms part of a building
– Separates two or more buildings
– or consists of a ‘party fence wall’
A ‘party fence wall’ is not part of a building but stands astride the boundary between land of different owners and is used to separate the land.
Floors or walls between flats are ‘party structures’.
Non-compliance with the Party Wall Act can lead to significant legal ramifications, costs, and delays. As a resident of Croydon, if your neighbour begins construction work and disregards the Party Wall Act, you can take legal measures.
If a dispute arises between you and your neighbour due to their failure to comply with the Party Wall Act, you have the right to initiate legal proceedings against them. Courts often look unfavorably upon any non-compliance with the statutory obligations set forth by the Party Wall Act.
One of the most substantial consequences of facing legal action is the financial impact. If a Building Owner has not adhered to their duties under the Party Wall Act, they’re likely to be held accountable for all the costs related to legal action taken to halt the work and resolve the issue. These costs are likely to exceed the expenses associated with complying with the Party Wall Act in the first place.
Moreover, the court can issue an injunction to stop any ongoing work until the dispute is resolved, leading to significant delays and financial losses. Interim injunctions can be granted swiftly, halting the works immediately until the Party Wall Act process is adhered to.