When do you need a Party Wall Agreement?

A Party Wall Agreement is needed if you are carrying out any building work that affects a shared wall, boundary or outbuilding.

A party wall is the shared wall that’s usually found between two semi-detached or terraced properties, dividing the dwellings of two separate owners. It also applies to garden walls that are built over a boundary, as well as any excavations that are carried out within three to six metres of a neighbouring property, depending on the depth of the new foundations.

When do you need a Party Wall Agreement? Normally, when there are building works such as loft conversions, foundations being dug for a new extension, or the installation of a damp proof course, an agreement will be required.

Any minor works, such as drilling into a dividing wall to fit kitchen units or shelves, or the likes of plastering or electrical work, will not usually need a Party Wall Agreement. It’s more about works that involve, for example, cutting into a wall, removing a chimney breast or cutting back footings to the foundations of a party wall.

Free Party Wall Advice

There’s so much to think about when you’re undertaking construction works, and getting your legal responsibilities right can be a minefield. But Icon Surveyors is here to help with up to 15 minutes of FREE telephone advice with an experienced party wall surveyor. There’s no obligation and we’ll put the advice in writing if you need it.

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    020 7493 9087


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    Party Wall Surveyors Role

    Expert Consultation

    Our Party Wall Surveying experts guide you through your construction project, ensuring compliance with the Party Wall Act while streamlining the process and minimizing disputes.

    Serving Notice

    We prepare and serve clear, concise, and legally compliant Party Wall Notices, enhancing the chances of gaining consent from your neighbours while outlining the project’s impact.

    Surveyor Appointment

    If adjoining owners request a surveyor, our skilled Party Wall Surveyors represent your interests and collaborate with others to ensure fair and impartial resolutions for both parties.

    Crafting the Party Wall Award

    Our surveyors carefully assess proposed works and draft a thorough Party Wall Award, providing you with peace of mind and confidence to move forward with your project.

    Monitoring and Ensuring Compliance

    Our Party Wall Surveyors monitor construction progress, ensuring compliance with the Party Wall Award, and verifying proper completion without damage to adjoining properties.

    How do I obtain adjoining owner agreement for construction works involving a party wall?

    Before any construction works involving a party wall can begin, the owner of the property undertaking the works must obtain the consent of all the adjoining owners. This is known as a Party Wall Agreement.

    The alternative, if the neighbours do not consent, is to appoint a surveyor to prepare a Party Wall Award.

    To get this process rolling, the property owner must serve their neighbours with a Party Wall Notice detailing the planned works.

    How it Works

    We have developed a simple and effective 3-step process to help you achieve success with your Party Wall Surveying need.

    Building Owner

    I am planning to undertake Works

    STEP 1

    Get a free, no-obligation fixed-price quote by simply emailing us your plans or drawings. It’s that easy!

    STEP 2

    Get your project moving without delay! With our lightning-fast service, you’ll receive your fixed-price quote within just 30 minutes.

    STEP 3

    Speak with our expert team to get all your questions answered and make informed decisions about your project.

    Adjoining Owner

    My neighbour is planning works

    STEP 1

    Get peace of mind with a free, no-obligation discussion. Email us your Party Wall Notice today and chat with our expert team in no time!

    STEP 2

    Our speedy service ensures you’ll never be left waiting for long. Within just 30 minutes, you will be speaking with an expert. Count on us for a quick response!

    STEP 3

    Empower yourself to make the best decisions for your home! Our expert team will provide you with all the information you need to weigh your options and proceed with confidence. Get in touch today and take the first step towards your peace of mind.

    The Role of a Party Wall Surveyor

    Whilst it is possible to serve a Party Wall Notice yourself using the relevant forms, it is often beneficial to engage the services of a specialist party wall surveyor. Self-filing a Party Wall Notice, or using someone other than a regulated party wall surveyor, will often prove a false economy as there is the risk that the notice will be incorrectly issued.

    A lot of self-filed notices contain inaccuracies, meaning they have to be re-issued, costing the property owner in terms of both time and money.

    A party wall surveyor accredited by the Royal Institute of Chartered Surveyors (RICS) is liable for any issues arising with any party wall documentation. They will therefore make certain that every aspect is thoroughly taken care of on your behalf so that your building works run like clockwork.

    Your party wall surveyor will also take time to answer your neighbours’ questions and put their minds at ease, so that they are less likely to challenge the notice, making things more straightforward and less costly for you.


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    Timing – When do you need a Party Wall Agreement?

    A property owner must provide two months’ written notice on building works affecting a party wall or boundary, or one month’s notice for excavation works.

    To allow adequate time for all the required party wall matters to be finalised ahead of works getting started, you are well advised to appoint your party wall surveyor a good three months before the start date of your building works.

    There is no need for planning permission to be in place to serve a Party Wall Notice, but it’s important to bear in mind that once the notice has been served, you will only have up to 12 months to commence works.

    Once a Party Wall Notice has been served, an adjoining owner has fourteen days to respond. The potential outcomes are consent, or dissent.

    Party Wall Notice – Consent

    Consent is when the neighbour gives their written approval (officially known as ‘assent’), with the agreement that the homeowner will resolve any issues that arise. This is the ‘Party Wall Agreement’.

    It is good practice at this stage to take dated pictures of the party wall, and to make notes of any existing cracks or damage to neighbouring properties, which both parties acknowledge before the works begin.

    Sometimes, the building owner carrying out the works may choose to appoint a surveyor to prepare a Schedule of Condition. This is a factual record of the condition of a property, detailing the affected parts of the adjoining property ahead of works commencing. It is beneficial in that it can minimise the risk of disputes arising down the line.


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    Party Wall Notice – Dissent

    If the neighbour challenges the works, or if they fail to reply within the required 14 days of the Party Wall Notice being served, this is known as dissent, and a Party Wall Award will be required.

    A Party Wall Award is a legal document which is put in place to protect the property and legal rights of both parties. It records the nature of the works, how and when they should be carried out, and how much will be paid. The Party Wall Award also includes the aforementioned Schedule of Condition, complete with photographs of the neighbouring property.

    Whilst a Party Wall Award is a necessity in the case of dissent, it is also a voluntary option for building owners who wish to avoid future disagreements by having everything documented.

    In order to prepare a Party Wall Award, it is necessary to appoint a party wall surveyor. One party wall surveyor can act for both parties, and it will be down to the building owner to cover the costs.

    The adjoining owner may elect to appoint their own independent party wall surveyor if they are looking for added reassurance. In most cases, the fees will again be the responsibility of the building owner.

    Team Accreditations

    Royal Institution of Chartered Surveyors Royal Institution of Chartered Surveyors. The Royal Institution of Chartered Surveyors is one of the world’s largest and most influential professional bodies that regulates and promotes the property surveying profession. With a Royal Charter since 1881. Within our team, we have both RICS Registered Party Wall Surveyors, Valuers and RICS Accredited Mediators. Royal Institution of Chartered Surveyors
    Chartered Institute of Building (CIOB) Chartered Institute of Building. The Chartered Institute of Building is the world’s largest and most influential professional body for construction management and leadership. With a Royal Charter since 1834 to promote the science and practice of building and construction for the benefit of society. Chartered Institute of Building (CIOB)
    Chartered Institute of Arbitrators (CIArb) Chartered Institute of Arbitrators. The Chartered Institute of Arbitrators is the world’s leading qualification and professional body for dispute avoidance and dispute management. With a Royal Charter since1979. Chartered Institute of Arbitrators (CIArb)
    Cabe CABE. Chartered Association of Building Engineers. A Building Engineer is a competent, professionally qualified, experienced individual with a critical understanding of the interaction of buildings and people. Building Engineers collaborate to deliver better outcomes for everyone. Cabe
    Centre for Effective Dispute Resolution (CEDR) Centre for Effective Dispute Resolution. The Centre for Effective Dispute Resolution (CEDR) specialises in mediation and alternative dispute resolution (ADR). We are an independent non-profit organisation and a registered charity. Centre for Effective Dispute Resolution (CEDR)
    RICS Registered Valuer RICS. The independent quality assurance process of Valuer Registration, reinforces the highest professional standards. Valuer Registration is a risk monitoring and quality assurance programme which checks compliance with the RICS Red Book. RICS Registered Valuer
    RICS Accredited Mediators All Accredited Mediators included on the register will have successfully completed training with RICS or a training provider that meets the requirements of the Civil Mediation Council. RICS Accredited Mediators

    Free Party Wall Advice

    There’s a huge amount to bear in mind when you’re undertaking construction works, and it can be a challenge to make sure all the legal bases are covered. The good news is that specialist party wall company Icon Surveyors is here to help with up to 15 minutes of FREE telephone advice with an experienced party wall surveyor in London or Surrey. There’s no obligation, and we’ll put the advice in writing if you need it.

    Get in touch
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    We’ve compiled a list of the most commonly asked questions from our clients to make sure you have all the information you need to make informed decisions about your project. From pricing to scheduling, we’ve got you covered.

    Plus, with our expert team on hand to address any additional questions or concerns you may have, you can rest assured that you’re in good hands.

    Don’t let uncertainty hold you back – check out our FAQ section today and get the answers you need to succeed!

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      What is a Party Wall Agreement? When is It Required?

      Party Wall Agreement is statutory in nature also known as Party Wall Award and It’s a legal document. To be precise, an agreement of this type will only arise if, under the Party Wall etc. Act 1996, a dispute is deemed to have arisen between a building owner and all or any of the adjoining owners whose property interest may be affected by any works carried out under the Act.

      Once a dispute is deemed to have arisen, a Party Wall Surveyor will be appointed to resolve the dispute that may have occurred. The terms or conditions that have been agreed upon by the parties will be incorporated into an agreement so that the building owners may commence their proposed party wall work.

      One of the most common issues when you need a Party Wall Agreement is leaving it too late to issue the Party Wall Notice. If the neighbour dissents to the notice, it will take time to issue the Party Wall Award, which could delay works.

      Another issue is failing to inform all affected adjoining owners. Sometimes there are multiple parties that need to be informed, such as freeholders as well as leaseholders. For terraced properties, it may be necessary to inform the neighbours on both sides. With a flat, there may be more people that need to be issued a Party Wall Notice.

      This is where using a specialist party wall surveyor becomes beneficial. They will carry out property ownership checks with the Land Registry, and will ensure that everyone who needs to be informed is included.

      Other issues that arise, particularly when self-filing, is failing to describe the proposed works thoroughly enough, and not using the right form of notice. For example, excavations require a different form of notice to loft conversions. Sometimes more than one type of notice may be required. Again, a case for using an experienced party wall surveyor, who will ensure all the correct notices are issued, and that they are meticulously prepared in order to avoid issues down the line.

      A party wall surveyor will provide you with personalised guidance on your obligations and responsibilities under the Party Wall etc. Act 1996, and on the party wall procedure in general.

      They’ll review the proposed works, visiting the site if required. They’ll then carry out legal searches to identify who officially needs to be informed, before serving the necessary Party Wall notices, making sure your legal obligations are fulfilled in line with the Party Wall Act.

      If adjoining owners dispute the works, the party wall surveyor will act for you by preparing a Party Wall Award.

      If you have been served a Party Wall Notice, your party wall surveyor will review the notice and supporting documents, and guide you on your options. If you wish to oppose the plans, the surveyor will represent you to ensure you are protected against costs and damages in relation to the works.

      At Icon Surveyors, we believe that party wall surveying costs should be transparent. Our charges for a Party Wall Notice start from £50 plus VAT; for a Schedule of Condition report from £350 plus VAT, and for a Party Wall Award from £700 plus VAT.

      For a fixed cost based on your individual needs, please get in touch.

      The Party Wall Agreement comes in a standard format and must include details as specified under the Party Wall Act. Though, depending on the complexity of the agreement reached by the parties this may vary as it sets out the rights and responsibilities of the building owner.

      However, all the party wall agreements under sections 10(2) & (13) of the Act will include a determination as to;

      a) The right to execute any work,

      b) The time and manner of executing any work; and

      c) Any other matter arising out of or incidental to the dispute including the costs of making the agreement.

      Incorporated within the above-stated requirements the parties should expect to find;

      Details of the proposed work being carried out: This will ordinarily include both a written description and any drawings that may be required for the proposed work to be carried out. The drawings usually consist of any changes that are being proposed to be made to the building owner’s property, or, detailed drawings of works that will affect an adjoining owner’s property. When such drawings are included, the agreement process is simplified in that a building owner must carry out the proposed work in accordance with the stipulated plans. If the building owner were to breach the terms or conditions of the agreement, the building owner would be liable to the adjoining owner for any damage or losses that occurred as a direct result of the breach.
      Schedule of Condition Report: The agreement will also include what is known as a “Schedule of Condition Report.” This document is the basis upon which an award is determined. The written Report documents the pre-work condition of both of the owner’s properties. For example, the condition of the walls or ceiling, whether there is any pre-existing damage, etc. Included in the written report will be photographic evidence.
      The agreement may include other matters such as security bonds for any foreseeable damage that may occur, insurance, or cost matters. There are a varied number of issues that may arise, too many to list here.
      A Party Wall Agreement provides protection for all or any of the parties who have an interest in the proposed works. That is to say, should any damage or damage claim result from the works, the Party Wall Surveyor or the County Court as the case may be, will use the agreement and incorporated documents to determine what, if any damage, has been caused by the works.

      Role of

      Undertaking Construction Works?

      Whether you’re extending your home, converting your loft or basement or carrying out building or excavation works that fall under the remit of the Party Wall etc. Act 1996, having a qualified, accredited party wall surveyor on your side from Icon Surveyors will ensure the entire process runs like clockwork.

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      Been Served a Party Wall Notice?

      We’re here to guide you through the process, explain your options and make everything perfectly clear so that you can make an informed decision about what to do next. We offer up to 15 minutes of FREE advice with a highly experienced party wall surveyor in East London.

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      Party Wall Surveying Costs

      At Icon Surveyors, we firmly believe that party wall surveying costs should be transparent. Read on to learn more about our charges for Party Wall Notices, Party Wall Awards and Schedule of Condition Reports.

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      Party Wall Advice

      Give us a call and speak directly with one of our qualified experienced Party Wall Surveyors. We are here to help and happy to answer your Party Wall Questions.

      Call on 020 7493 9087

      Email us drawings, Party Wall Notices or photographs and our qualified team will review them and provide a response within 30 minutes.


      Why Choose Icon Surveyors

      Highly qualified

      Certified by the leading governing bodies in the property industry


      More than 20 years of experience in the industry


      UK-wide locations mean we’re always close by for your surveying needs.

      Competitive Pricing

      Offering you the best value for money

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