The Act defines a party wall surveyor as, ‘any person not being a party to the matter appointed or selected under section 10 to determine disputes’.
Surveyor’s key roles: “The first is to advise the owners on their rights, the necessary facts and a recommended course of action. The second is to negotiate with the other party’s surveyor to resolve that dispute.”
The role of a Party Wall Surveyor is to assess the work being carried out, and the objections or questions the adjoining owners may have, and to draw up an impartial Party Wall Award. This is a document that sets out how and when the work is to be carried out, and the method and manor in order to safeguard the owners interests.
The most time consuming task that the party wall surveyor performs, prior to the work commencing, is the preparation of a schedule of condition of the adjoining owner’s property.
A schedule of condition is the act of visiting the adjoining owner’s property in advance of the works commencing to record the current condition of the property.
The schedule of condition will involve taking detailed photos of the adjoining owner’s property and taking a detailed written record of the current condition of the property, noting any defects such as hairline cracks or de-bonding wall paper.
The schedule of condition will be in a report format and will form part of the award. The benefit of the schedule of condition is to set out a record of the current condition of the adjoining owner’s property, thereby allowing to the surveyors to determine if the building owner’s proposed notifiable works have caused any damage.
If there are two surveyors, this is prepared by the building owner’s surveyor who then sends a copy to the adjoining owner’s surveyor for agreement.
This blog post was provided by the party walls team at Christopher Surveyors. You can contact us on 020 3666 0723 and receive initial free advice on the subject of Party Wall Surveyors and other party wall related matters.