Mulberry Building Surveyors - South West London

Specialists in Part Wall Matters

Faculty of Party Wall Surveyors

Party wall legislation has existed in London for over 300 years. It concluded in the London Building Acts 1939 and was very popular with surveyors and property owners in the old county of London. Many people outside of London expressed a wish to share the benefits of this legislation and so in 1996 a bill to extend party wall law was put in place for the whole of England and Wales.

This Act provides owners of buildings certain new rights and obligations to other owners in relation to party walls and similar structures. At the same time it provides a framework for a disciplined approach to exercising these rights. The Act makes provision in respect to party walls, excavation and construction in proximity to certain buildings or structures and for connected purposes.

In practice, a party wall is a more general term to describe any form of separating wall between terraced or semi detached properties, or an external boundary wall that separates plots of land owned by different parties. In either case, the term indicates that the wall is not exclusively owned and controlled by one party. Instead, the parties on either side of the wall each have an interest in its continued existence and any future changes that made be made to it, ie. such as building work.

As a Chartered Building Surveyor I am ideally placed to help you facilitate this important item of legislation that has to be concluded prior to commencement of the building works. The Act itself gives the right for anyone to call themselves a Party Wall Surveyor providing that they are not a party to the matter itself. However, I have very considerable experience in building work and am ideally placed for all party wall matters arising.

The primary duty of a Party Wall Surveyor is to resolve any disputes between the owners, ie. of the building where the proposed work is to take place, or and adjoining one. When a dispute arises, the Surveyors are appointed to resolve the dispute and draw up a document of agreement called an Award and then to serve it on both parties. The Award will detail the work that is to be undertaken, when and how it is to be done, and usually records the condition of the adjoining owner’s property before the work begins.