Can I prepare my own Party Wall Award/Agreement?
You as the Building Owner (the one carrying out the notifiable building works) cannot act on behalf of yourself and be your own party wall surveyor or prepare your own Party Wall Award. It is generally recommended to seek professional assistance from a party wall surveyor or a qualified expert in party wall matters. Here are a few reasons why:
1. Complex Legal Requirements: Party wall legislation can be complex and vary depending on the jurisdiction you are in. The Party Wall etc. Act in the United Kingdom, for example, contains specific requirements and procedures that need to be followed when preparing a Party Wall Award. A professional who specialises in party wall matters will have a thorough understanding of the legal requirements and can ensure that the award is compliant with the relevant legislation.
2. Impartiality and Independence: An essential aspect of the Party Wall Award is that it should be impartial and independent. A party wall surveyor acts as a neutral third party who can objectively assess the situation, consider the rights and interests of both the building owner and the adjoining owner, and make fair and unbiased decisions. A professional surveyor can help ensure that the award is fair and balanced.
3. Technical Expertise: Party wall matters can involve technical aspects, such as structural considerations, construction methods, and potential impacts on neighbouring properties. A party wall surveyor has the necessary technical expertise to assess these aspects accurately, provide professional advice, and ensure that the Party Wall Award adequately addresses the specific circumstances and potential risks involved.
4. Mediation and Resolution: In situations where disputes arise between the building owner and the adjoining owner, a party wall surveyor can play a crucial role in mediating and finding mutually agreeable solutions. They can help facilitate communication, negotiate terms, and ensure that the Party Wall Award reflects the agreed-upon resolutions.
By engaging a qualified party wall surveyor or expert, you can ensure that the Party Wall Award is prepared correctly, meets the legal requirements, and provides a fair framework for addressing party wall matters. Their professional knowledge and experience can help protect your interests, promote effective communication with the adjoining owner, and minimise the risk of disputes or legal complications.