In this article
What is a Party Wall Notice?
The notice outlines the intended works and must be served to a neighbour 2-12 months before works are to commence.
What works require a party wall agreement?
- Any work to party walls between semi-detached or terraced houses
- Work to any party walls or structures between flats
- Excavations or loft conversions that involve work to, or close to, the party wall
- Storey extensions
- Increasing the thickness or height of party walls
- Damp proofing
- New walls adjoining to the party wall
Minor works, such as re-plastering, redecorating, or fitting kitchen/shelving units do not require a party wall agreement.
It’s important to note that an award cannot be granted retrospectively. If works go ahead without an award or an agreement, the consequences could be severe.
1. My neighbour and I are on good terms and they said we can go ahead, do we need an agreement in writing?
It’s really important to avoid the temptation of an ‘over the fence’ agreement. Even if you feel you and your neighbour have an excellent relationship, things may happen during the building process that are out of your control or entirely unexpected. This could not only strain your personal relationship with the neighbour but also have potentially severe financial consequences.
In all scenarios, it is advisable to keep written records, in some cases these may be potentially used in court.
2. My neighbour consented to the notice, what next?
If your neighbour has consented to the works, signed the agreement, and a surveyor has completed a schedule of condition, you’re free to proceed. It’s important to keep records of the agreement and document the works as they progress.
3. My neighbour rejected the notice...
If your neighbour has rejected the notice but has not returned a counter-notice OR you are unhappy with the revisions, the appointment of surveyors is necessary to settle the matter.
4. My neighbour did not respond to the notice...
If your neighbour has failed to respond to the notice, you must assume they do not consent to any works and proceed accordingly. Therefore, the appointment of surveyors is necessary.
In some cases, you may need to appoint and pay for a surveyor on behalf of the neighbour.