If you plan on undertaking any building work involving a shared wall with your neighbour, you must comply with the Party Wall Act 1996, where a Party Wall Surveyor comes in. Before any events, discuss the benefits of hiring a Party Wall Surveyor.
What Does a Party Wall Surveyor Do?
A Party Wall Surveyor is a qualified professional who acts as a mediator between neighbours undertaking building work. Their primary role is ensuring the work complies with the Party Wall Act 1996. They will also help resolve any disputes arising during the building process.
What Is the Party Wall Act of 1996?
The Party Wall Act 1996 is a UK law that regulates the construction, alteration, and maintenance of party walls, party fence walls, and excavations near neighbouring buildings. It aims to prevent and resolve disputes between neighbours by providing a framework for how building work should be carried out in shared spaces. The act also sets out the rights and obligations of property owners when undertaking building work near a shared boundary.
1. Prepares Party Wall Notices
One of the main benefits of hiring a Party Wall Surveyor is that they will prepare the necessary Party Wall Notices for you. It is a legal requirement and must be done correctly. The notice must be served to your neighbour at least two months before the building work commences. The message will outline the proposed work, the start date, and the project's duration.
2. Serves Party Wall Notices
The Party Wall Surveyor will also serve the Party Wall Notices on your behalf. It ensures the notice is administered correctly and within the required time frame. If the information is not administered correctly, this can cause delays in the building work, and you may be required to start the process again.
3. Assesses the Condition of the Party Wall
Another benefit of hiring a Party Wall Surveyor is that they will assess the condition of the Party Wall. It is essential as it will determine whether additional work must be done to ensure the wall is structurally sound. If the barrier is not structurally sound, this could cause issues during the building work, and you may be required to undertake additional work at your own cost.
4. Prepares Party Wall Award
Once the Party Wall Notices have been served and any necessary work has been completed, the Party Wall Surveyor will prepare a Party Wall Award. It is a legally binding document that outlines the agreed-upon work. It will also include details of any compensation that may be required if the work causes damage to your neighbour's property.
5. Agrees on the Party Wall Award
The Party Wall Surveyor will also mediate between you and your neighbour while agreeing on the Party Wall Award. It is essential as it can help to prevent any disputes from arising. The surveyor will ensure the award is fair and reasonable for both parties.
Hiring a Party Wall Surveyor before building work commences is beneficial for several reasons. They will prepare and serve the necessary Party Wall Notices, assess the condition of the Party Wall, prepare the Party Wall Award, and act as a mediator during the process. As a result, the project moves quicker and takes less time to finish.
All these things will help ensure that the building work runs smoothly and that disputes are resolved quickly and fairly. If you plan on undertaking any building work involving a shared wall with your neighbour, hiring a Party Wall Surveyor is essential to ensure you comply with the Party Wall Act 1996.
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