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Planning Permission

Planning Permission

DO I NEED PLANNING PERMISSION?

A guide for detached dwellings in the UK


(Terraced houses, flats, maisonettes/other buildings and commercial properties have different rules and rights not covered here)

WHAT IS PLANNING PERMISSION?

There are rules about what you can and can't build, or make alteration to, on your property. Your local authority may grant permission to complete work following a detailed application.

WHAT IS PERMITTED DEVELOPMENT?

Some common projects and certain types of work come under 'permitted development rights' and do not need planning permission.

WHAT ARE BUILDING REGULATIONS?

Even if you don't need planning permission, any building work undertaken on your property such windows, doors or a new conservatory must comply with building regulations. If you use a builder then the responsibility usually lies with them, but always check.

Any work carried out on your property without planning permission or approval could be subject to demolition or restoration. As the property owner, it is your responsibility to seek planning permission even when work is carried out by a contractor.

Detached house planning persmission Planning permission properties

LISTED BUILDINGS

Subject to more restrictive rules, you will need 'listed building consent' to demolish or to alter and extend listed buildings and for separate buildings within the grounds of a listed building.

Not covered below seek specialist advice.

ARTICLE 4 DIRECTION

Permitted development rights can be withdrawn by the Secretary of State or your local planning authority across a defined area with temporary or permanent effect.

Always check with your local planning authority.

DESIGNATED AREAS

Conservation Areas, National Parks, Areas of Outstanding Natural Beauty and World Heritage Sites are known as 'designated areas' and subject to more restricted rights.

Not covered below seek specialist advice.

Any work carried out on your property without planning permission or approval could be subject to demolition or restoration. As the property owner, it is your responsibility to seek planning permission even when work is carried out by a contractor.

35% of applicants used an architect*

27% of applicants submitted directly*

22% of applicants used a builder*

16% of applicants used a consultant*

COMMON PROJECTS
When they DO & DON'T need planning permission

Diagram of a loft conversion which shows the points which need to be considered when converting a loft and whether you need planning permission for a loft conversion or not?

Loft Conversion

A loft conversion is considered a permitted development not requiring planning permission unless you extend or alter the roof space to exceed specified conditions.

Building regulation approval is required on any work.
You DO need planning permission if:
  1. The addition of 50 cubic metres, or more, of roof space (must include any previous additions).
  2. Appearance of materials are different to the existing house.
  1. Higher than the highest part of the existing roof.
  2. Addition of verandas, balconies or raised platforms.
  3. Side-facing windows are not obscure-glazed and can open (unless the opening part is 1.7 metres from the floor of the room).
  4. Roof extension is not set back 20cm from the eaves. (The roof enlargement cannot overhang the outer face wall of the 'original house').
  5. Roof extension is beyond the plane of the roof slope at the front of the house.

The Original House Rule

Many planning regulations, such as extensions, refer to the 'original house'. This means the house as it was first built or as it stood on 1st July 1948 (if built before this date). Be aware a previous owner may have added extensions.

Diagram of a detached house with a car in the garage

Conservatories
& Extensions

A conservatory and an extension fall under the same rules and are considered permitted developments (subject to conditions and limits).

Building regulation approval is required on any work.
You DO need planning permission if:
Conservatory and extension planning permission
All extensions:
  1. More than half the land around the 'original house' is to be covered (this includes any other buildings).
  2. The extension is forward of the front or side of the 'original house' that faces onto a highway.
  3. Materials used are not similar to the existing house (not applicable for conservatories).
  1. Higher than the highest point of the roof.
  2. The eaves and ridge height are higher than the existing house (single-storey and two-storey).
  3. The eaves height is more than 3 metres, if within 2 metres of the boundary.
  4. Addition of verandas, balconies or raised platforms.
Side extensions planning permission
Side extensions:
  1. More than single-storey or over 4 metres.
  2. Wider than half the width of the 'original house'.
Rear extension single-storey planning permission
Rear extension single-storey:
  1. Extends beyond the rear of the 'original house' by over 4 metres.
  2. More than 4 metres in height.
Rear extension two-storey planning permission
Rear extension two-storey:
  1. Extends beyond the rear of the 'original house' by over 3 metres or ...
  2. ... is within 7 metres of boundary opposite rear wall.
  3. Side-facing windows are not obscure-glazed and can open (unless the opening part is 1.7 metres from the floor of the room).
  4. Roof pitch does not match existing house.

71%

of planning permission applications are for an extension or a remodel*

Window & Doors

You do not need planning permission to replace doors and windows with those of a similar appearance.

Building regulation approval is required on any glazing replacement work or you can use a registered installer (such as Everest) to complete approved work for you.

You DO need planning permission if:
  1. Fitting a skylight/roof light that protrudes more than 150mm beyond the plane of the roof slope or ...
  2. ... is higher than the highest point of the roof.
  3. Fitting an upper-floor side elevation window that is not obscure-glazed and can open (unless the opening part is 1.7 metres from the floor of the room).
You DO need permission if you live in a listed building, designated area or fall under Article 4 Direction.
Window and door planning permission
Basement planning permission

Basements

Planning regulations for a basement are currently under review but in most cases, they are considered a permitted development.

You DO need planning permission if:
  1. Excavating to create a new basement.
  2. Creating a new separate unit of accommodation.
  3. Altering the external appearance of the house, e.g. adding a light well.
Building regulation approval is required and consideration for the Party Wall Act 1996.

65%

of applications DID NOT have complaints from neighbours*

84%

of applications had their planning permissions approved*

YOU MIGHT NOT REALISE
that you DO NEED planning permission for:

1HEDGES

You don't need permission to plant a hedge but they can be controlled through planning conditions. If the height of a hedge adversely affects a neighbour they fall under the Anti-social Behaviour Act 2003 and you can be subject to a formal notice from the local authority.

2TREES

You don't need planning permission but many trees are protected by a preservation order and you will need council approval to prune or cut them down.

3ANTENNA

If you install more than two antennae on the property, or a single antenna is more than 1 metre tall or wide (the second more than 0.6 metres). Or, if attached to a chimney and is more than 0.6 metres above a chimney stack.

4SIGNAGE

Advertisement consent may be required for an advertisement (not estate agent boards) bigger than 0.3 square metres - or any size if illuminated - outside your property.

Planning permission for trees, decking, fences and other house surroundings
5DECKING

If your decking is more than 30cm off the ground or in combination with other extensions is more than 50 percent of the garden.

6HOME WORKING

If your home is no longer mainly a private residence; if more people will be calling at your property; if you are operating at unreasonable hours; or, if creating any nuisance such as smells or noise.

7PAVING

For an area more than 5 square metres of impermeable material with no provision for water to run off into a permeable area.

8FENCES

For a fence over 1 metre next to a highway, or over 2 metres elsewhere. If the fence borders onto a listed building or its grounds.

How long it takes to have an application approved*

< 8 weeks

19%

8-12 weeks

37%

3-6 months

32%

6-12 months

8%

12 months +

4%

Most common reasons for a planning permission application being turned down*

Loss of privacy

23%

Loss of light

14%

Highway safety

10%

Parking

9%

Traffic

7%

Layout of building

7%

Effect on listed building

7%

Appearance and materials

6%

Noise

4%

Government policy

3%

Always check with your local planning authority before starting any work

 

*An independent survey of 400 people who had applied for planning permission in the last five years. Date of survey, November 2017.

The information provided above is taken from government guidelines at planningportal.co.uk and is a guide only and is not a source of legal information.

Planning rules are complicated and are subject to change. Information is correct at time of publication: January 2018.

 

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