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Do I need a party wall agreement for a loft conversion?

  • Posted by: Sebastian Grayson
Expand your home with loft conversion bedroom

Do you need a party wall agreement when getting a loft conversion? This is a common question for many of our clients when booking a loft conversion and can also apply to many other types of extension work. If your loft is adjoining with the next property, you will need a party wall agreement in place with your neighbours before the work can begin, according to the Party Wall Act of 1996.

 The act will always apply whenever you need to carry out work on a shared wall in your home or any other shared structures. This is very often the case with loft conversions since the party walls tend to be the best load-bearing wall option. 

What is a Party Wall?

A party wall is any wall that stands astride the boundary of land that belongs to two or more different owners. They are found in adjoining houses such as semi-detached or terraced homes. A wall is also considered to be a party wall if it is shared with other owners, such as a ceiling and floor of flats that are one above the other. As a general rule, a wall should be considered a party wall if any damage to that wall could potentially affect the next property. 

What is the Party Wall Act?

The Party Wall Act of 1996 provides a building owner with additional rights beyond ordinary law rights when carrying out various sorts of work to an existing party wall. You can find all the details on party walls and more information on when you need a party wall agreement in the relevant section of the gov.uk website. 

The Party Wall Act was designed to prevent and resolve disputes between neighbours whenever any work is carried out on adjoining properties. It does this by regulating the legal process of informing any affected parties about the planned building works that will have any effect on shared structures. Under the Party Wall Act, any building owners that are planning to carry out work will need to inform the adjoining homeowners of the plans and get consent in the form of a party wall agreement.

Seymour Ave Tottenham Velux

What is a Party Wall Agreement?

The party wall agreement is written consent from the neighbours that own adjoining properties to your home on the building work that you are planning to carry out. Your neighbours might also request adjustments to the manner of how the works will be carried out or the timing of the work.

To get a party wall agreement you will need to serve a party wall notice, which should include your name and address, the address of the building that the work is to be carried out on, a full description of the plans, and when you intend to begin. For a loft conversion where a party wall agreement is needed, the party wall notice must be served to the neighbours at least two months before the planned start. 

Can a Loft Conversion Be Done Without a Party Wall Agreement?

In some cases, it is possible to carry out a loft conversion without the need for a party wall agreement. In general, you will not need an agreement if the planned works do not involve any construction work on walls that are shared with adjoining properties. For example, if the loft is being built on top of a standalone or detached house, there will be no party wall involved.

In some cases, your loft conversion might be constructed with a beam that is placed over a purpose-built column rather than placing it inside the party wall, which will negate the need for a party wall agreement. 

If your loft conversion plans involve work on any of the walls that adjoin other properties, you will need to get a party wall agreement before you can begin. 

Enhance Your Home with a Loft Conversion Today

A loft conversion can add some serious space to your home and provide you with a room for any use. Whether you are considering a loft conversion or have a firm idea of what you want already, get in touch today using our online contact form and we’ll be in touch to start getting the ball rolling.

To learn more about loft conversions or to discuss your property in more detail, talk to our experienced SimplyEasy Refurbs team today!

If you’re ready to sit back and enjoy a Simply Easy Refurb on your home, contact us today.

Author: Sebastian Grayson