How Can I force my Neighbour to Get on with Repairing my Property?

by: The Party Wall Surveyor


What should happen after the structural engineer has completed their plan for the remedial work? I have agreed to the work via the party wall surveyor (I am the adjoining owner) but it’s all gone quiet for two months!

These roof repairs really need doing, but I’m not sure whether the neighbour will proceed with it. Can I enforce the work if they have stalled?


Depending upon the cause of the damage you can either request a payment in lieu of repair (in accordance with Section 11(8) of the Act) or compensation (in accordance with Section 7(2) of the Act as an alternative to the building owner undertaking the remedial work.

You cannot force the building owner to complete the remedial works but you can force them to pay for them. However, you will first need to clarify the quantum of your claim – the basis for this would normally be a builder’s estimate. If the building owner disputes your claim it can be referred to the surveyor(s) to determine. That determination will be confirmed in a further award and, following the appeal period, that award can be enforced. So, the steps are:

  1. Obtain an estimate for the remedial works (based on the structural engineer’s plan).
  2. Present your claim to the building owner – set a reasonable deadline for a response.
  3. If they dispute or ignore the claim, refer it to the appointed surveyor(s) for determination.
  4. If the amount awarded is not paid within the time stipulated in the award, enforce in the courts.

This process will give rise to further surveyor’s fees so, when the building owner realises that, they may get on with the works to avoid a dispute.