Do I Need a Party Wall Agreement?
If you`re planning on carrying out building work on or near a shared boundary with your neighbour, then you might need to get a Party Wall Agreement in place. But what exactly is a Party Wall Agreement, and when is it necessary?
Firstly, let`s define what we mean by a `party wall`. A party wall is a wall that separates two properties, but which is also used by both parties. Party walls can be found in terrace and semi-detached properties, and are often common features of flats and apartments.
So, what is a Party Wall Agreement, and why do you need one? A Party Wall Agreement is a legal document that outlines the rights and responsibilities of both parties when it comes to building work that affects a shared wall or boundary. This agreement is designed to protect both parties` interests and to help resolve any disputes that may arise during the building process.
The Party Wall etc. Act 1996 is the legislation that governs Party Wall Agreements. It states that, if you plan to undertake building work that affects a shared wall or boundary, you must notify your neighbour(s) in writing at least two months before the work begins. This notice should include details of the proposed work and its likely start date.
If your neighbour agrees to the work, then no Party Wall Agreement is required. However, if your neighbour dissents or does not respond to the notice, then a Party Wall Agreement will be necessary. This agreement must be agreed upon by both parties.
It`s worth noting that Party Wall Agreements can cover a range of building work, including:
– Cutting into the wall (e.g. to add a beam for an extension)
– Demolishing and rebuilding the wall
– Lowering a shared wall`s foundations
– Excavating within 3-6 metres of a neighbouring property`s building
If you`re unsure whether your building work requires a Party Wall Agreement, it`s always best to consult with a professional. A surveyor or engineer can advise you on whether the work is likely to affect a shared wall or boundary, and can help you prepare the necessary paperwork.
In summary, if you`re embarking on building work that affects a shared wall or boundary, then a Party Wall Agreement may be necessary. This agreement will outline both parties` rights and responsibilities and can help prevent disputes arising between neighbours. Be sure to consult with a professional if you`re unsure about the legal requirements of your building work.