What is a party wall? To answer this question, first, you should know that the Party Wall Act 1996 is a legal framework to prevent and resolve disputes that arise during construction on the dividing wall of two properties. As per this act, the party wall is the adjoining wall connecting two properties. This act applies throughout Wales and England to protect disputes among neighbours.
You need to understand the importance of a party wall if you start any construction on your property. This valuable information can prevent you from getting into any trouble.
What is a Party Wall? Everything there is to know
In simple terms, the wall that connects two adjoining properties or buildings is known as the party wall. This shared wall is also known as the boundary wall or dividing wall. However, this doesn’t mean that every boundary between two properties, like; a garden fence or hedge is also called a party wall. The appropriate word for such boundaries is “party fence wall.” To summarize it all, a party wall is not anyone’s property but is present in two different properties that separate two lands.
Party Wall’s Importance in the 1996 Act
The act was applied throughout England and Wales on July 1, 1997. This was developed to save disputes among adjoining property owners. To prevent neighbouring properties and their owners from getting into disputes, construction on the party wall must be held with an agreement. The best way to proceed with the construction involves doing surveys and getting an agreement. For such purposes, you should hire a party wall surveyor.
The party wall is, as described earlier, the property of both the adjoining owners. Hence, it needs approval from both ends. Whether it’s a house extension or other sort of construction work, the neighbouring property owner’s approval is required.
What is Party Wall Disputes
Party wall disputes happen when an adjoining owner starts an extension or construction without informing the neighbouring property owner. For example, if you are considering doing a house extension near the party wall and don’t inform your neighbour, there will be a dispute. Because according to the Party Wall Act, you need to hire a surveyor who will assess all the possibilities and inform your neighbour. There would be an agreement by providing the adjoining owner with all the details.
How to Avoid Party Wall Disputes
As mentioned earlier, it’s all about doing some pre-paper work. You will need to hire a surveyor, and he will handle all the prerequisites so you can proceed further. The act includes a three-meter rule, which you will have to consider throughout the construction. Any violation of the act can cost you big time, which is why you should be thoughtful.
If you are about to start an extension or construction shortly, than we would suggest that you shouldn’t look any further than us. We at A&A Party Wall Surveyors will be at your assistance in order for you to commence further.