Latest blog posts

When Should Party Wall Notices be Served?

Tuesday, 20th April 2021 | by: Justin Burns

Completing the party wall awards is often the last part of the jigsaw required to allow work to commence on site and the process which leads up to that point can be delayed for any number of reasons; from technical queries relating to the proposed works to the appointed surveyors’ holiday arrangements. It’s therefore advisable to get started ... Read more >>

Written or Photographic Schedule of Condition?

Sunday, 21st March 2021 | by: Justin Burns

While the current social distance regulations remain in place, surveyors are under pressure to spend as little time inside occupied properties as possible. One way of doing that is to rely upon a photographic only schedule of condition instead of the traditional written record but can it ever be as useful?Prior to the pandemic the primary ... Read more >>

Categories: Party Walls

Additional Storeys and The Party Wall Act

Sunday, 7th March 2021 | by: Justin Burns

An amendment to the General Permitted Development Order which allows property owners to add up to 2 further storeys to their property without planning consent came in to force on 30th December 2020. So does this mean we’re going to see houses all over London being extended upwards despite how incongruous such an extension may look? A scan ... Read more >>

What to do when your Neighbour Ignores The Party Wall Act

Tuesday, 16th February 2021 | by: Justin Burns

We get 2 or 3 calls most weeks from owners whose neighbour has gone ahead with work which comes within the scope of the Party Wall Act without serving notice.They are surprised to hear that there are no penalties for such behaviour and their only remedy is to apply to the court for an injunction. Gaining an injunction seems to most owners to ... Read more >>

Categories: Party Walls, Surveying

The Party Wall Act – Common Misunderstandings

Friday, 11th December 2020 | by: Peter Barry

The Party Wall etc. Act 1996 has been with us for almost twenty-five years but it is still clear that the public has, at best, a tenuous grip on its details. I have outlined a few of the most common misunderstandings below:My extension will be on my own land so the Act does not apply.Section 6 of the Party Wall Act covers adjacent ... Read more >>

Categories: Party Walls, Surveying

Reserving Issues in a Party Wall Award

Wednesday, 30th September 2020 | by: Justin Burns

In an ideal world the appointed surveyors would have all the information they require available and be in a position to cover all aspects of the work in detail in the award but there are situations where that is either not possible or pragmatic. We refer to these as ‘reserved matters’ i.e. a matter where some additional information is required ... Read more >>

Categories: Party Walls

Signing and Serving Party Wall Awards

Sunday, 6th September 2020 | by: Justin Burns

When a party wall award has been agreed it should be served on the owners without delay or ‘forthwith’ as the authors of the Act put it but how does that happen in practice?Until section 15 of the Act was amended by the Electronic Communications Act in 2016 all awards were generally served either by post or in person. The typical procedure ... Read more >>

Categories: Party Walls

Garden Offices and The Party Wall Act

Thursday, 20th August 2020 | by: Justin Burns

A recent survey found that almost three in five (59%) said that after lockdowns lift, they would like to work from home some or all of the time in their current job. The creation of a home office space is therefore going to be a priority for many people in the months ahead. If you have the luxury of a spare room that’s great but won’t be the ... Read more >>

Categories: Party Walls

Further Awards and The Party Wall Act

Sunday, 9th August 2020 | by: Justin Burns

If you’re familiar with party wall procedures you’ll know that the award is the document produced by the surveyor(s) to resolve the dispute which arose when an adjoining owner dissented to the notice(s) but that's not always the end of the story.The 6th Edition of the RICS template award included a clause stating that the surveyors ... Read more >>

Categories: Party Walls

Working hours and the Party Wall Act

Sunday, 12th July 2020 | by: Justin Burns

Section 10(12) of the Party Wall etc. Act 1996 confirms that an award may cover the ‘time and manner of executing any work’. As one of the key principles of the Act is to avoid adjoining owners suffering unnecessary inconvenience, it is logical that the appointed surveyor(s) should have this power. This is the relevant clause from the RICS ... Read more >>

Categories: Party Walls

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