Saturday, 29 January 2011
1. He was notified of the neighbouring excavation and foundation works, under section 6 of the Party Wall etc Act 1996 (“the Act”). He appointed his own surveyor (adjoining owners’ surveyor), whilst his neighbour retained his own surveyor (building owners’ surveyor).
2. Under the requirements of the “Act”, both surveyors had selected a “Third Surveyor”, who in this instance was a very experienced and notable fellow of the Pyramus & Thisbe Club.
3. The works proceeded under an Award drafted by the two surveyors (adjoining and building owners).
4. However, there was damage to the adjoining owners’ property, as a direct result of the foundation works.
5. The building owners’ surveyor decided that he did not want to be involved in determining the extent of the damage, or even agree a financial settlement. The adjoining owners’ own surveyor stated that he had never been in this situation before, and therefore did not know how to deal with the issues.
My old acquaintance was now in a quandary, and did not know what to do.
It was very simple to deal with, but did require a certain amount of knowledge of the “Act”, which with all due respect these two surveyors obviously lacked.
My first suggestion to him was to get his (adjoining owners) surveyor to deal with the damage under a new Award, and also get his surveyor to appoint a structural engineer to monitor the damage over a period of time. All the (reasonable) costs and fees can been written in the new Award, that can be issued onto the Building Owner, exparte if necessary if the Building Owners own surveyor does not want to deal with the matter.
My second suggestion to him was that if his own (adjoining owners) surveyor found it difficult to deal with, for whatever reason, he can appoint the Third surveyor himself directly, in order to determine the damage. This procedure under the “Act” is rarely used, possibly because it requires the respective owners (building & adjoining) to have a certain understanding of the “Act”
I wished him well with his endeavours, and maybe when he bumps into me again in the future he will tell me of the outcome.
Disclaimer: It is important to remind everyone that the comments I make in this blog are my opinion, and should not be used as a basis of any legal definition or enactment, and the reader is advised to take their own legal advice for matters relating to their own circumstances.
Bernard Humphrey-Gaskin is the principal of abp Chartered Architects ( abp Architects ), South London architects. Bernard Humphrey-Gaskin works with his wife Maria Humphrey-Gaskin. Bernard Humphrey-Gaskin qualified as an architect in 1987. Bernard Humphrey-Gaskin has a vast experience in the design and construction on various building types. Bernard Humphrey-Gaskin has worked for notable practices such as RHWL, The Property Services Agency and WS Atkins.
Bernard Humphrey-Gaskin has run his own architectural business since 1991, and has worked in the educational, commercial and residential sectors. Bernard Humphrey-Gaskin has experience in theatre projects. ecological and green design projects. Bernard Humphrey-Gaskin is also an experienced party wall surveyor and is a member of the Pyramus & Thisbe Club.
Bernard Humphrey-Gaskin’s other interests and activities include web design, golf, making home movies and is a member of the internet based chess team “The Black Stallion International Chess Team”. Bernard Humphrey-Gaskin was also a Croydon school governor for over 12 years and is still involved with independent school appeal panels for the London Borough of Croydon. Bernard Humphrey-Gaskin has also been an active member of the architectural advisory design panel (TAP), for the London Borough of Bromley planning department for a number of years. Bernard Humphrey-Gaskin was for four years chairperson of the Croydon, Bromley Sutton branch of the Royal Institute of British Architects.
Bernard Humphrey-Gaskin works closely with his wife Maria Humphrey-Gaskin at abp Chartered Architects as a well organised husband and wife team. Maria Humphrey-Gaskin is also architecturally trained and apart from taking part in the running of the practice as the Practice Manager, she also deals with the measured survey work, and initial design stages of various projects. Maria Humphrey-Gaskin (nee Stylianou) also speaks fluent Greek.
ABP Chartered Architects provides a professional service, from inception to completion. ABP Chartered Architects undertake the designs, planning and building regulation applications, and contract administration for all types of jobs from small domestic works to larger commercial projects. ABP Chartered Architects ( abp Architects ) are quality assured to ISO 9001.