If you`re planning on any type of renovation or construction project on your property, it`s crucial to understand whether you`ll need a party wall agreement. The Party Wall etc. Act 1996 requires anyone who intends to carry out work on or near a party wall to notify their neighbor in writing. This notification, known as a party wall notice, is the first step in obtaining a party wall agreement.
But what exactly is a party wall, and what types of work require a party wall agreement? Let`s find out.
What is a party wall?
A party wall is a wall that sits on the boundary between two properties. This wall is typically shared by the two adjoining properties, and both property owners have a legal interest in it. Party walls can also include garden walls, floors between flats, and boundary walls.
What work needs a party wall agreement?
Under the Party Wall etc. Act 1996, the following types of work require a party wall agreement:
1. Building a new wall that is adjacent or astride the boundary line between two properties.
2. Carrying out any work to an existing party wall such as repairing, altering, or demolishing the wall.
3. Excavating or digging within three meters of a neighbor`s building, where the excavation will go deeper than their building`s foundations.
4. Excavating or digging within six meters of a neighbor`s building, where the excavation will go deeper than a line drawn at a 45-degree angle from the bottom of their foundations.
Why do you need a party wall agreement?
A party wall agreement is a legal document that outlines the rights and responsibilities of each property owner. The agreement typically includes a schedule of condition survey, which is used to document the condition of the properties before work begins. This survey is used to determine if any damage has occurred during the course of the work and to establish who is responsible for any repairs.
In addition, a party wall agreement can protect you from potential legal issues that may arise if your neighbor claims damage to their property caused by your work. The agreement also ensures that the work is carried out safely and in line with building regulations.
If you`re planning to carry out any work on or near a party wall, it`s essential to understand your legal obligations and ensure that you obtain a party wall agreement. Failing to obtain a party wall agreement can lead to legal disputes and even injunctions, which can delay your project and cause unnecessary stress. So, before you begin any work, make sure to adhere to the Party Wall etc. Act 1996 and protect your investment and relationship with your neighbor.