Owning a Yard Wall in Between Two Properties
If you own a yard wall in between two properties, you may be wondering what your responsibilities are regarding it. The wall in question is called a party wall and is subject to specific legal requirements.
In this article, we will cover everything you need to know about the shared walls, including their purpose, ownership, legal requirements, and the steps you need to take to ensure your wall is compliant.
What is a Party Wall?
It is a wall that separates two properties and is shared by the owners of both properties. It is also known as a boundary wall or party fence wall, depending on its location.
The purpose is to provide a physical boundary between the two properties and to prevent any disputes between the owners of the adjoining properties.
Who owns the wall?
Both property owners own the wall equally, and they are responsible for maintaining it. This means that any repairs or alterations to the wall must be agreed upon by both parties and carried out at their joint expense.
If you plan to carry out any work, you need to comply with the legal requirements set out in the Party Wall etc. Act 1996. The act applies to any work carried out, including repairs, alterations, and new construction.
The act requires property owners to serve a party wall notice to their neighbors before any work can begin. The notice must provide details of the proposed work and give the neighbors the opportunity to agree to the work or appoint a surveyor.
Party wall surveyor
A surveyor is an independent expert who is appointed to resolve disputes between neighbors regarding wall matters. If your neighbor does not agree to the proposed work, they have the right to appoint a surveyor.
The surveyor will prepare a party wall award, which is a legal document that sets out the details of the proposed work and how it will be carried out. The award also includes any conditions or restrictions on the work and details of any compensation payable to the neighbor for any loss or damage caused by the work.
Advantages of a party wall agreement
Having an agreement in place can provide many benefits, including:
Avoiding disputes with your neighbors over the wall and the work you want to carry out.
Ensuring that any work carried out on the wall is safe and complies with building regulations.
Protecting both parties’ interests by setting out the details of the work and how it will be carried out
If you own a yard wall in between two properties, you need to be aware of your legal responsibilities regarding the wall. By following the legal requirements set out in the Party Wall etc. Act 1996, you can ensure that any work you carry out on the wall is safe, compliant, and agreed upon by both parties.
If you require any further advice or assistance regarding this subject, Party Wall Solutions is here to help. Our expert surveyors can provide you with all the guidance you need to ensure that your wall is compliant and that any work you carry out on it is agreed upon by both parties.