Party Wall Surveyors

Party Wall Surveyors are regularly engaged where work is to be carried out to a wall shared with another owner. Also where excavation is due to take place within 3 or sometimes six metres of a neighbouring building.

The Party Wall Etc Act explained in 76 seconds!

Demystify Party Wall Surveyors

To try and demystify the works of party wall surveyors we have decided to provide a mini series of informative blogs. This is the first one and we hope you are suitably interested to read the next one!

By way of an introduction, Graham Kinnear Property Consultant provide a party wall service to both domestic and commercial property throughout England and Wales. (It should be noted that the Act does not apply in Scotland). Headquartered in Kent we also have offices in London, Hertfordshire, Bedfordshire, Buckinghamshire, Oxfordshire, Staffordshire and Cambridgeshire.

Qualified Party Wall Surveyors

All of our surveyors are qualified in this field either via the Royal Institution of Chartered Surveyors or via the Faculty of Party Wall Surveyors, with some of us holding qualifications with both organisations. Some of our team are also qualified with the Chartered Association of Building Engineers and the Chartered Institute of Building. 

So to start our party wall journey let us first consider the works which may invoke the Party Wall Etc Act 1996.

Works covered by Party Wall Surveyors

Party Wall Surveyors should be engaged if you are proposing to build a new wall on or astride what we surveyors term the line of junction but what you will probably call the boundary line.  In such circumstances you are obliged to serve the neighbour with what is called a Line of Junction Notice or a Section 1 Notice. This is often the case if you are proposing to construct a rear extension to your premises and wish to maximize the space available.

Party Wall Surveyors should also be involved if you are planning to undertake work to a wall which is shared by your neighbour. This could include raising the wall up, removing a chimney breast from the shared wall, inserting beams into the wall (for example to support the floor for a loft conversion) or to remove something which is overhanging the wall which impedes your building plans. In these circumstances you would be obliged to serve your neighbour with what is called either a Section 3 Notice or a Party Structure Notice.

The final circumstance where  Party Wall Surveyors may be required is if you propose to excavate ground within 3 metres of your neighbours building and that those excavations are likely to be lower than the depth of their foundations. In such circumstances a Section 6 notice, which is also known as a 3 metre notice would be required. The excavations could relate to the placing of foundations or drainage or indeed the creation of a basement level. The notice is required in respect of the excavation, rather than the works which require the excavation.

It may be the case that you are proposing a rear extension on the boundary line, the removal of a chimney breast and the conversion of your loft space. This being the case you would have to serve all of the above noted notices upon your neighbour.

Still need help?

If you are unsure whether the Party Wall Etc Act applies to your proposed works then please email us or contact us on 01843 583000 and one of our surveyors will assist you with an initial review of your proposals, free of charge and without obligation. Alternatively click here for further information.

In our next Party Wall Blog we will look at the requirements of the Party Wall Notice itself and how it needs to be served on your neighbours.