Party wall may be described as a common wall which is shared by two property owners.
The party wall should be such that one half of the thickness of the wall is shared by the other property owner.
Party wall act is an act which clearly gives instructions to tenants and developers who wish to undertake repairs, improvements or alterations to an existing property. This act clearly tells the builders that within how much distance they can excavate at regular depths. The act provides frame work within which a particular site can be excavated. This act not only gives guidelines, but at the same time gives permission for the construction work to take place. The party wall surveyor is appointed on a statutory notice and is free of instructions of the appointing party. In other words, the party wall surveyor is capable of taking independent decisions. The party wall surveyor needs to take decision in such a manner that it does not affect the building decisions of the developer in any manner.
Duration for which a party wall is constructed depends. If the party wall is constructed without any reference to any time period, then it means it is permanent. If the wall is constructed according to some agreement, then it means it will last as long as the agreement is there. If the agreement is declined, than the party wall ceases to exist. Also, if due to some reasons the party wall decays, then the easement of support to party wall ceases to exist.
Manner it is used
As already discussed, that the party wall is a common wall between two properties. Since each owner has a right to use it, he can easily take decisions regarding the party wall, with ease. A party wall should be constructed covering a certain depth. Unless and until some agreement has been made, no one can use a party wall to make windows or anything.
A party wall can be used by the adjoining owners to make chimney flues or fireplaces. The chimney flue can cover half of the wall, while the lower part of it is located wholly in the other part of the wall.
Originally, none of the owners have the right to destroy the wall, but if due to some reason, the party wall decays or if there is some accident such as a fire, then the owner can remove the party wall.