Do I Need A Party Wall Award For An Extension? | Checkatrade
Request a quote
Review a Trade

Have you completed a project recently? Let your tradesperson know how they did.

Advice Centre

Get Inspired! Check the latest industry expertise and read insider tips from our vetted tradespeople.

Search For A Trade

We interview and vet all our tradespeople to ensure they meet our high standards.

Join Checkatrade

Join us and benefit from the millions of potential customers who use Checkatrade to find reliable tradespeople.

Advice Centre

Grow your business! Check out top tips and expert advice for boosting your reputation online.

Login To Your Account

Edit your profile, view callback requests and ask for feedback from customers.

Do I need a Party Wall Award for an extension?

Planning an extension? You may be wondering if you need to serve your adjoining owner a Party Wall Notice. Learn about the process of serving a Party Wall Notice, Party Wall Awards, and surveyors.

If you live in a terrace or semi-detached house, you’ll be aware that you share at least one wall with a neighbour. This shared wall is called a party wall.

Work on a party wall for things such as installing steel beams for a loft conversion or removing a chimney breast, plus other works relating to cutting into or cutting away from the party wall, requires you to serve a Party Wall Notice on your adjoining owner. But what if you’re planning an extension?

We spoke to Checkatrade member, Paul Williamson, of First for Party Wall Surveyors to learn about the process of serving a Party Wall Notice, Party Wall Awards, and the role of Party Wall Surveyors in a dispute.

See the tradespeople we've checked and recommend for your job

Do I need a Party Wall Award for an extension?

What can be confusing is If you’re planning an extension. Why you would have to notify the adjoining owner, as you’re not working on the party wall, but excavating for foundations?

This is where the ‘etc’ party of the Party Wall etc Act 1996 comes in. This part of the act requires you to serve notice under Section 6 for excavations within 3m and sometimes 6m of your neighbour’s property whether it be their house, garage, shed, or even a brick wall.

A Party Wall Award is a legal document made by a surveyor or surveyors to settle a dispute and authorise the proposed works that fall under the Party Wall etc Act 1996 (more on this later).

party wall agreement for extension

Rules for carrying out work that’s covered by the Party Wall etc Act 1996

The Party Wall etc Act 1996 allows the building owner to carry out their works but at the same time, it protects the adjoining owner.

Before you commence work you will need to serve a Party Wall Notice on your adjoining owner. This must be at least one month before starting works for excavations or two months for working on the party wall itself.

Your adjoining owner will then have 14 days in which to respond.

  • They will either consent to the Notice, which means you can then go ahead with the works
  • If they dissent to the Notice or just don’t reply, this is deemed a dissent. You will now be in dispute and need to contact a surveyor to put a Party Wall Award in place

What to do if your neighbour dissents to the Party Wall Notice

If your neighbour doesn’t consent or respond to your Party Wall Notice, you’re classed as in dispute.

At this point, you can either try reasoning with your neighbour or take further action by appointing a surveyor.

A surveyor can work for both parties and this is called the agreed surveyor. Alternatively, both parties appoint their own surveyor.

Your neighbour may also send a counter-notice to you. This will outline any changes to works that they’re unhappy with. If you agree to these changes, you may be able to overcome the dispute.

reaching party wall agreement with neighbour

Hiring a Party Wall Surveyor

You’ll need a Party Wall Surveyor if you’re not able to come to an agreement with your neighbour.

They’re an impartial professional who will solve the dispute and enable the works to proceed by way of a Party Wall Award.

They’ll also decide on the details of the job, including the time and manner that allows you to carry out your works. Once they make a decision, they’ll issue/ serve a Party Wall Award.

  • You’ll need to pay for the surveyor or surveyors to put the Party Wall Award in place
  • If you don’t agree with the Party Wall Award you have the right under Section 17 of the Act to appeal it

How much does a Party Wall Surveyor cost?

If you’re unable to reach an agreement with your adjoining owner, you may be curious as to how much a Party Wall Surveyor costs. The price will depend on the complexity of your project, the size of your home, and a few other factors.

To learn more, including average prices, take a look at our Party Wall Surveyor cost guide.

See the tradespeople we've checked and recommend for your job

What is covered by a Party Wall Award?

A Party Wall Award is a detailed legal document covering how, when, and what you’re allowed to build. It should cover:

  • Access details
  • Working hours
  • Damages and how these will be repaired
  • Noise considerations
  • Surveyors’ fees
  • Compensation
  • Security

What if I don’t serve Notice?

Planning and building works can be an exciting process, but if your neighbour won’t give their permission for construction, this can throw a spanner in the works.

In this case, you may be wondering about building without serving a Party Wall Notice or having an Award.

This can be risky because your adjoining owner can get an injunction to stop works that can be costly and time consuming.

Find a professional to help with your Party Wall Award

It can be frustrating if you’re unable to reach an agreement with your neighbour, but this doesn’t mean you won’t be able to proceed with your extension. You will however need to find a qualified Party Wall Act Surveyor to solve the dispute and issue a Party Wall Award.

Unsure how to find a qualified Party Wall Surveyor? Try our free search feature. Simply add your postcode below to see professionals recommended in your local area.

Once you have dealt with the Party Wall Act, you’ll need to find a local contractor to take on the construction of your extension.

Remember, our search feature is the quickest and easiest way to find tradespeople in your area. And we’re so confident in our members that we offer a guarantee in the unlikely event something goes wrong with your job (T&Cs apply).

See the tradespeople we've checked and recommend for your job

FAQs

Do you need to serve a Party Wall Notice for a loft conversion?

Loft conversions, like extensions, are a big project that requires a lot of construction to take place. Most likely, steel beams will need to go into the party wall to support the floor to the loft and your roof will be temporarily removed, which exposes the party wall. So you will need to serve Notice under Section 2 for the loft conversion.

Do you need to serve a Party Wall Notice for a detached house?

Many people don’t realise that in certain cases you may need to serve notice for a detached house as well as terraced or semi-detached properties. This really comes down to how close your home is to your neighbours. If your property is within 3 – 6 metres of your neighbours, you’ll need to serve notice.

Can you serve a Party Wall Notice without a surveyor?

Yes, but you’ll need to ensure it’s a proper, detailed document covering all the essential considerations. You’ll still need a surveyor if you and your neighbour are in dispute.

How much does an extension cost?

Adding an extension can completely transform your home, giving you extra living space and allowing you to alter the layout to best suit your lifestyle. Extensions are a great investment, with average prices starting from £37,500.

If you’d like to know more about extension prices and important considerations, read our house extension cost guide.

Tell us what you think

Please note, you cannot leave a review, or contact a tradesperson by commenting.

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

What others think of this article:

No comments yet!

Also in this project

How much does a house extension cost?

Whether you want to build above, below, to the side or back we’ve compiled the most common extension costs. Including bathrooms, kitchens, garages, lofts and more....

Read more
Party wall surveyor cost guide

In this guide we look at the average party wall surveyor cost in the UK. The costs included in this article are guide prices, to get accurate quotes and professional advice we recommend you speak to l...

Read more
How much does it cost to build a double storey extension?

Drastically improve your living space, with our in-depth guide to reducing the duration and cost of a two story extension. With useful tips and factors to consider....

Read more
How to find a surveyor when buying a house

When buying a property, one of the key decisions is choosing a surveyor to carry out your home survey. In this guide, we look at how to find a surveyor when buying a house and what a surveyor actually...

Read more