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Frequently asked Questions

 

Q1. I’ve been served a Notice what do I do?

 

You can agree to the works, appoint an agreed surveyor or appoint one to act for you, usually at the Building Owner’s cost. Seek advice to find out which course of action is right for you if you are not sure.

 

Q2.  What are your duties under the Act?

 

Certain works to party structures and excavations within 3.0m or 6.0m must be notified and if your neighbour objects the Act sets out how to deal with such a dispute. There are set notices you must serve. These are legal notices and must be served correctly.

 

Q3. Who is a Building Owner?

 

A Building Owner is the person wishing to have the work carried out.

 

Q4. Who is an Adjoining Owner?

 

The Adjoining Owner is the owner with an interest of more than one year but has certain exclusions such as Mortgagees. There can be more than one owner e.g., Freeholder and long leaseholders.

 

Q5. How much Notice should I give?

 

You should really give at least two months notice before your intention to start works but longer is better in case of a dispute. The sooner the better.

 

Q6. Can I serve my own notices?

 

Yes, but if they are incorrect this will delay your

project and could invalidate an Award.

Q6.  What does a Party Wall Surveyor do?

 

A Party Wall Surveyor can make sure notices are served properly. He prepares and agrees an award and a schedule of condition. He will look at the works proposed and raise any queries he may have regarding those works.

 

Q7. Who pays the fees?

 

Generally these fall to the Building Owner but this can vary if there are works which benefit the adjoining owner.

 

Q8. What is an Award or Party Wall Agreement?

 

This sets out the works to be carried out, how they are carried out and usually includes a pre-work schedule of condition. This protects all parties if damage arises during the works and assists in avoiding or resolving any disputes.

 

Q9. Can I use the Act to resolve a Boundary Dispute?

 

No. However, it does help reduce the risk of boundary disputes.

 

Q10. Can I build a Party Wall astride a boundary?

 

You can only do this with your neighbour’s agreement.

 

Q11. What if I ignore the notice?

 

A further notice will follow and eventually a Surveyor will be appointed for you. The Act was written to prevent neighbours delaying works.