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Party wall act advice.

Our neighbours are applying for planning permission to knock an old extension and build a new one.
On the same day we received a letter from Greenwich Council telling us this we also got a letter from a company that specialises in party wall stuff. They say they can act for us at the cost of our neighbour to ensure any damage caused is paid for by the neighbours.
Is this so? And if so can anyone recommend a local person or company that we could use.
Many thanks.

Comments

  • I'm fairly sure you can choose your own and the neighbour will have to cover the cost. The neighbour will just want you to get it done asap because it will hold up the work.
  • My neighbour got his brother to act for him. He has to be qualified btw.
  • iainment said:

    Our neighbours are applying for planning permission to knock an old extension and build a new one.
    On the same day we received a letter from Greenwich Council telling us this we also got a letter from a company that specialises in party wall stuff. They say they can act for us at the cost of our neighbour to ensure any damage caused is paid for by the neighbours.
    Is this so? And if so can anyone recommend a local person or company that we could use.
    Many thanks.

    That seemed rather too co-incidental to me. Not linked to the council in any way or a council employee having a sideline ??
  • iainment said:

    Our neighbours are applying for planning permission to knock an old extension and build a new one.
    On the same day we received a letter from Greenwich Council telling us this we also got a letter from a company that specialises in party wall stuff. They say they can act for us at the cost of our neighbour to ensure any damage caused is paid for by the neighbours.
    Is this so? And if so can anyone recommend a local person or company that we could use.
    Many thanks.

    That seemed rather too co-incidental to me. Not linked to the council in any way or a council employee having a sideline ??
    They are linked, the company obviously gets the info from the council planning records.
  • edited June 2017
    It can be very costly for your neighbour. Average is £1500-2000. Don't go with the equivalent of the party wall ambulance chasers who send those letters, they will stripe people and it's not good for neighbourly relations. Look for a fixed price one and do them a favour or go with who they suggest. If they show you all the plans and are welcoming with everything then it will help in the long run. Let's hope they bend over backwards for you.

    There are all different types. If it involves building onto the party wall, knocking one down, within 3m of existing foundations etc.
  • iainment said:

    Our neighbours are applying for planning permission to knock an old extension and build a new one.
    On the same day we received a letter from Greenwich Council telling us this we also got a letter from a company that specialises in party wall stuff. They say they can act for us at the cost of our neighbour to ensure any damage caused is paid for by the neighbours.
    Is this so? And if so can anyone recommend a local person or company that we could use.
    Many thanks.

    Have a little chat with your neighbours first they send these letters out to scare people.
  • Any works to a party wall (a common wall shared by adjacent properties) should be undertaken in strict compliance with the procedures set down in the Party Wall Act. The reason that the act exists in the first place is because of the long history of claims between neighbours where works are undertaken which may effect both properties. It is usually the case that the person initiating the works will bear the cost. As someone pointed out the letter you received was probably from a specialist who monitors the Planning portal and sends speculative mail shots to property occupiers whose neighbours may be about to embark on some building project that will fall under the auspices of the act. These people might be suitable representatives but I'd ask for referees before appointing and also check their hourly rates as many will exploit the situation and charge a premium. Although you don't need to pay you don't want to lumber your neighbour with ridiculous costs as this won't help the relationship. Please check out the .gov website which offers guidance....

    https://gov.uk/guidance/party-wall-etc-act-1996-guidance

    I would suggest that you read through the above and then sit down with your neighbour and discuss the appointment. You will unequivocally need a Party Wall Surveyor but it will help if that person is well versed in the Act, fair mined and non-adversarial and reasonably priced and someone local, if suitably qualified.

    The Act was introduced to prevent disputes between neighbours so don't try and bypass or avoid it.
  • Thanks guys. Can anyone recommend a good surveyor for this.
  • We are going through this process at the moment and are using the same surveyor as our neighbour is using for their extension work. I understand this is reasonably common practice and the surveyor has made it clear that he is duty bound to act for both parties in a fair and professional way.

    We get on very well with our neighbours and don't anticipate any real problems so that's probably why we've gone along with this option rather than go through the hassle of appointing our own surveyor.
  • iainment said:

    Thanks guys. Can anyone recommend a good surveyor for this.

    Mike Heselden is a good, conscientious bloke and, as an aside, was a 'Charlton Colt' in the mid seventies.

    http://www.premiumsurveyors.co.uk/
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  • dwb said:

    We are going through this process at the moment and are using the same surveyor as our neighbour is using for their extension work. I understand this is reasonably common practice and the surveyor has made it clear that he is duty bound to act for both parties in a fair and professional way.

    We get on very well with our neighbours and don't anticipate any real problems so that's probably why we've gone along with this option rather than go through the hassle of appointing our own surveyor.

    +1 to this. We're in the same boat. 13 weeks into a 18 week build. Talk to your neighbours, try and use the same company and it'll save the building party a large wedge. We're semi detached but got a detached neighbour but as we're building 1m away from the detatched party wall boundary, we still need an agreement with them too. Our bill is in the region of £2k with Peter Barry but wouldnt recommend them to be perfectly honest!
  • Downloaded one of the internet, neighbour signed it job done.
  • edited June 2017
    Have a think about what your neighbour is doing and consider if it's something you or a future buyer of your property would also want to do. Work carried out now at your neighbours expense could make it a little easier and cheaper when it comes to work on your property. Also consider what sort of access to or on your property your neighbours builders will need. And the mess and parking inconvenience they will inevitably cause. There's probably a little room for some quid pro quo fixing up job in there if you need it. I've had extension work carried out on two properties over the years. The first on a semi-detached where the neighbour saw the benefit of my builders overlapping his property by effectively building his side of the wall up so he could put up a similar extension in the future. The second time the neighbours didn't want me to that and asked that my works stayed within my boundary. The upshot is now they've decided they do want to put up something similar they are also going to have to stay inside their boundary but their builders won't have the luxury of an empty space in the neighbours garden to gain access from because my building extension occupies it.
  • Thanks all.
  • We're about to go through this with our neighbours. One side has signed the letter I downloaded from the gov website but the other side aren't co-operating.

    It's tricky as they're good neighbours and we don't want to fall out with them but they've got no real grounds for objecting (we've had the planning permission come through ok) and I don't think they really understand the process. I've tried to explain what it entails but they've got a bee in their bonnet about a high level window for the bathroom. It's inward opening and frosted glass but they're not happy about it for some reason.

    It's well over 2 weeks ago that we served the notification so officially we're now in dispute (even though I've tried to explain on more than one occasion that they/we need to appoint a surveyor if they disagree).

    Can anyone recommend one in the Bexley area?
  • We're about to go through this with our neighbours. One side has signed the letter I downloaded from the gov website but the other side aren't co-operating.

    It's tricky as they're good neighbours and we don't want to fall out with them but they've got no real grounds for objecting (we've had the planning permission come through ok) and I don't think they really understand the process. I've tried to explain what it entails but they've got a bee in their bonnet about a high level window for the bathroom. It's inward opening and frosted glass but they're not happy about it for some reason.

    It's well over 2 weeks ago that we served the notification so officially we're now in dispute (even though I've tried to explain on more than one occasion that they/we need to appoint a surveyor if they disagree).

    Can anyone recommend one in the Bexley area?

    Shotgun steve
  • edited March 12

    We're about to go through this with our neighbours. One side has signed the letter I downloaded from the gov website but the other side aren't co-operating.

    It's tricky as they're good neighbours and we don't want to fall out with them but they've got no real grounds for objecting (we've had the planning permission come through ok) and I don't think they really understand the process. I've tried to explain what it entails but they've got a bee in their bonnet about a high level window for the bathroom. It's inward opening and frosted glass but they're not happy about it for some reason.

    It's well over 2 weeks ago that we served the notification so officially we're now in dispute (even though I've tried to explain on more than one occasion that they/we need to appoint a surveyor if they disagree).

    Can anyone recommend one in the Bexley area?

    As posted above Mike Heselden.

    http://www.premiumsurveyors.co.uk/

    EDIT: His office is Eltham but he'd cover Bexley.
  • Cheers
  • Give this fella a call, he knows a thing or two about partying on a wall.

    image
  • Downloaded one of the internet, neighbour signed it job done.

    As long as a surveyor has inspected both properties prior to works, during works and once work has been completed then that is fine. If not, you have no safeguards if anything goes wrong.
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  • Still waiting for Dave M to suggest you smash your neighbour's back door in.
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