Oakfield Building Chartered Surveyors

Party Wall Berkshire

Party wall considerations often arise during building works on your property or when you have a dispute with a neighbour. In most cases, you will require a surveyor to help resolve issues.

Professional surveyors act impartially under the law to determine the proper outcome in each party’s interest. Their advice and ability to navigate a challenging legal landscape make them invaluable partners for anyone considering party wall-building work, modifications, or disputes. 

What is a Party Wall? And how do I know if my wall is a Party Wall?

A party wall is a wall that stands on the land of two or more owners that: 

  1. Forms part of a building (such as a semi-detached or terrace house or the adjoining wall separating two or more apartments in a larger complex)
  2. A wall that does not form part of a building but separates the land of different owners, such as a garden wall. Fences

Do not confuse a party wall with a party structure. The latter is a floor or other building feature that separates buildings or parts of buildings with different owners, such as flats.

The Party Wall Etc Act 1996 is a law that applies to England and Wales and provides a framework for preventing or resolving disputes concerning party walls Berkshire. Anyone wanting to perform work on or near a party wall or structure must notify the adjoining owners of their intentions and obtain their consent or agreement before starting. Our surveyors can help you understand your rights and responsibilities under the Act. 

The Act does not cover wooden garden fences that stand astride properties. Most fences stand entirely on the property of one owner or another. In fence disputes, affected parties should consult the deed. 

If you don’t know whether your wall is a party wall, contact our team at Oakfield Surveyors today for a full assessment. 

Party Wall Berkshire
Party Wall act Berkshire

What is Party Wall Surveying?

Party wall Berkshire surveying involves resolving conflicts between neighbouring properties sharing a common wall or boundary. The mechanism dates back centuries in the UK, owing to the large number of properties that share a common or party wall. 

Party wall awards are legally binding documents that set out the terms and conditions of the work. They include information on how and when it will be done and how the initiating party will protect the property of the other. 

Property owners should always have the proper legal documents before beginning building work. Failing to do so could lead to litigation. 

Party Wall Services in Berkshire

We are one of the leading Chartered Surveyors covering London,  Berkshire, Buckinghamshire, Hertfordshire and Oxfordshire and regulated by the Royal Institution of Chartered Surveyors (RICS).

Our team is dedicated to providing the highest quality building surveys.
Contact us to discuss your requirements further.

What is the role of a Party Wall surveyor?

Party wall surveyors are professionals who advise on the legal aspects of party wall matters, including:

  • Serving notices
  • Preparing Schedules of Condition
  • Drawing up Party Wall Awards

Sometimes, both parties appoint a party wall survey. In other cases, parties agree to hire a third surveyor based on an initial recommendation. Other times, the owner of the adjoining property hires the surveyor. 

Berkshire’s surveyors must ensure fair and equal treatment of both parties, as in the rest of the country. Their role is to ensure that the building work complies with the Party Wall Act 1996 and to resolve disputes. 

The party wall surveyor will perform wall surveys and assess their impact on the party wall and the neighbouring property. They will then prepare a document called a Party Wall Award, which sets out the rights and obligations of both parties, as well as any conditions or compensation that may apply. These awards are legally binding and enforceable in the courts, if necessary. 

Party surveyors act as a mediator if there is any disagreement or conflict about proposed building work. Their goal is to find a mutually acceptable solution. However, if they cannot get an agreement, they can pass the case to a third surveyor to provide independent adjudication. 

Party Wall surveyors operate in an unregulated sector in the UK. Therefore, people can claim to be one without qualifications or experience. Therefore, property owners should always choose professionals with proper training, certification, and industry affiliations. 

How do Party Wall services work?

Berkshire Party Wall services are convenient packages property owners can use for various purposes involving party walls, structures and boundary walls between neighbouring properties. 

Provisions of services include: 

  • Serving Party Wall notices to inform the neighbours of the proposed work
  • Preparing and agreeing on a Party Wall Awards, setting out the terms and conditions of the work
  • Monitoring the work and identifying any damage or defects caused by the work
  • Resolving any claims that may arise during or after the work
  • Advising on the rights and obligations of both parties under the Party Wall Act 1996
  • Producing a Schedule of Condition – a record of the existing state of the neighbouring properties before the work starts

Qualified surveyors who are members of professional bodies, including the Royal Institution of Chartered Surveyors (RICS) or the Faculty of Party Wall Surveyors (FWPS), provide Party Wall Berkshire services. Their expertise in wall-related issues on domestic and commercial premises lets them manage dozens of clients while resolving conflict and minimising recourse to the courts. Including them in proceedings can help both parties to avoid costly and time-consuming court battles, protect their property rights and ensure safe and effective work.

Berkshire Party Walls

We are one of the leading Chartered Surveyors covering London, Buckinghamshire, Hertfordshire and Oxfordshire and regulated by the Royal Institution of Chartered Surveyors (RICS).

Our team is dedicated to providing the highest quality building surveys.
Contact us to discuss your requirements further.

Who pays for the Party Wall agreement cost and what is the Party Wall Act 3 metre rule?

Who pays for a Party Wall agreement depends on the type and scale of the work and the number of surveyors involved. Building owners usually initiate payment for surveyor fees. If the neighbour does not consent to use the same surveyor as the building owner, they can appoint their own surveyor, and the building owner will have to pay for both.

 

The Party Wall Act 3 metre rule is a provision that applies to excavations or constructions that are within 3 metres of a neighbouring property. The rule requires the Building Owner who intends to carry out such work to notify the Adjoining Owner in advance and obtain their consent or appoint a surveyor to resolve any dispute.

 

Surveyors and Oakfield Chartered Surveyors have many years of experience helping clients like you manage Party Wall issues. We have offices in London and Beaconsfield, supporting clients to move past roadblocks and deal with complaints. Our team is here to advise you on the best way to navigate the process and emerge with the outcome you want. Contact us today and find out more about how we can help you.

Berkshire Party Wall Loft
Oakfield Structural Surveys
Boundary Walls
Boundary Wall Rules
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