Your Party Wall Surveyor in London
Over 8 million people live and work in Greater London, jostling for space. It is inevitable here, where a square foot is worth more than anywhere else in the UK, that building work is pushed up to the property boundary wherever possible. From Kensington & Chelsea basement conversions, trendy East London loft conversions and suburban garden wall disputes, we've handled them all. Remember too that 'party walls' are just one of several 'party structures' which could be walls or other structural elements separating owners of one part of a building with another.
Landlords and homeowners in London are under extreme pressures to make the most of their available space, resulting in party wall works which when handled correctly can go without a hitch. In London the process is the same as in the rest of England and Wales and should be followed at all times to avoid awkward confrontations.
When do you need to tell your neighbour about party wall work?
If you live in London and you want to build on the boundary between your own and your neighbour's property (making a party wall deeper, taller or shorter) then you must tell them. Likewise if you want to work on a party structure or existing party wall (i.e. removing a chimney) then you must let them know what you are planning. Lastly if you're planning on digging down near to the foundations of their property then you're obliged to notify them.
There is government guidance on preventing and resolving disputes in relation to party walls. It would be wise to familiarise yourself with this documentation before you embark on any party wall work. You need to give your neighbour 2-12 months notice of works, including a plan of what you will be doing, so that they have due time to respond. You can of course talk to your neighbour before beginning the formal notification process, so long as you remember that any agreement you reach should be in writing.
What if my neighbour doesn't give consent?
You must appoint a surveyor. You can agree on an impartial surveyor called 'the agreed surveyor', or each party in the dispute process can appoint their own surveyor. You cannot act as your own surveyor. Metcalfe Briggs are Chartered Building Surveyors ideally situated to undertake party wall surveys in London, please see below for a few examples of party wall work we've carried out in London recently. Please do contact us or request a call back today.
What happens now that a surveyor has been appointed?
They will agree on a party wall award. This is a written snapshot of the party wall's condition before work begins, and after the work is complete, so that any damages can be properly identified and assessed.
A party wall award will also include agreements on working hours, specifically for the usage of any loud machinery, and site access (if access will be needed occasionally through the adjoining owner's property.
Case studies of our party wall survey work in London
Why appoint Metcalfe Briggs as your party wall surveyor?
We are an RICS accredited company with a broad experience of party wall issues in London. See below for a small handful of the roles we have taken on as a Party Wall Surveyor in London, some where we were the impartial appointed surveyor to mediate between both parties, some where we were appointed to act on behalf of our client.
We also managed to successfully negotiate a party wall agreement between 6 parties in Shepherds Bush, West London. If you are looking for a party wall surveyor in East London we have completed such work there too, having a base in nearby Essex. For Party wall surveys in South and North London you're welcome to call on us too.
For more information on party walls please visit our dedicated party wall information area.