Southdown Surveyors Newhaven
Southdown Chartered Surveyors and Building Consultants have been providing clients in Newhaven and across Sussex with a professional and independent surveying service for over ten years. The Party Wall Act is one of our specialist areas and we have a team of experts who can provide professional advice on your specific situation. With our expertise and knowledge of this specific area we are able to implement the necessary legal procedures to ensure your proposals are undertaken within the rules of the Party Wall Act.
Matthew Symmonds, our founding Director, has a particular interest in Party Wall matters and is highly experienced in understanding and working within the parameters of this significant piece of legislation. Matthew is a member of The Pyramus & Thisbe Club, the professional organisation that promotes best practice in the application of the Party Wall Act 1996.
The Party Wall Act 1996 Explained
A party wall is simply a dividing wall between your property and a neighbour’s property, or an excavation near to a neighbouring property. This Act came into force in July 1997 and is now enshrined in English law. For any refurbishment proposals or construction projects involving building works to a party wall, the regulations set out in the Party Wall Act 1996 become applicable.
The general premise is that any building work that might affect the support function or structural strength of a party wall between two properties, or has the potential to cause damage to the neighbouring side of the wall, must be notified in writing. If the Party Wall Act does apply to any building works carried out by yourself or the neighbour on the other side, the process laid down in the Act needs to be followed and administered correctly. This requires a detailed understanding of what is (and is not!) permissible, and what you must (and must not!) do. If the processes under the Act are not followed correctly, ongoing on-site work may be stopped while the issue is resolved, which is likely to result in extra costs being incurred and undesirable delays.
It is strongly advised that prior to any building work being undertaken that you obtain pertinent advice and gain a general understanding of the processes and obligations of the Party Wall Act 1996. An overview and general guidance provided by the Government can be obtained here, with a detailed explanatory booklet available to read here. It is however recommended that specific advice be sought from a professional surveyor who is fully conversant with the Act with a solid experience in Party Wall matters.
Southdown Surveyors can help
At times, issues and disputes can arise over any building project. If, for whatever reason, it has not been possible to reach a satisfactory agreement between the neighbouring parties and written consent has not been given under the Party Wall Act 1996, Southdown Surveyors can help to resolve the situation.
Why not let Southdown Surveyors in Newhaven use their impartiality to liaise with your neighbours (and their surveyors, where necessary) to ensure that all parties meet their obligations under the Act, ensuring that everyone is treated fairly? Our team have extensive experience in acting as either the Building Owner’s surveyor, where you intend to undertake the works, or as the Adjoining Owner’s surveyor, where your neighbour is undertaking works. We can provide you with peace of mind and confidence in the success of your project.
If you wish to discuss your requirements for any building project or construction works that may fall under the Party Wall Act 1996, or if you are the neighbouring party, please feel free to call our helpful team on 01323 739183. To arrange an appointment please contact us by filling in the form on this page. Or, if you would simply like some further information on the Party Wall Act etc, please visit either of the links below:
https://www.gov.uk/guidance/party-wall-etc-act-1996-guidance – Guidance on preventing and resolving disputes in relation to party walls
http://www.rics.org/uk/knowledge/glossary/party-walls/ – A clear, impartial guide to… Party walls