If you’re planning to build a new property or make some significant changes to your current property, there’s a good chance you’re going to need to get planning permission. This article gives a basic guide to what you do and don’t need planning consent for and the easiest way to navigate your way through the ins and outs of getting your project approved.
What you DO need planning permission for
In general you will need planning permission if you want to build a new property, make a significant change (such as adding an extension) to your existing property or if you want to change the use of your building (for example from commercial to residential or vice versa).
If your property is in a Conservation Area or has Listed Building status, then the requirements for planning permission tend to be more stringent.
What you DON’T need planning permission for
Some building projects fall under ‘permitted development rights’ which don’t require planning permission. This allows for minor improvements on your home, for example loft conversions or modest extensions without the necessity for consent. Generally, if the project has no impact on your neighbours or the environment then it will probably fall under permitted development, however the degree of work allowed without consent is also influenced by aspects such as location and how much work has already been done to the property.
Commercial projects that usually have permitted development rights include industrial premises and warehouses (though there are some limitations and restrictions to this), some outdoor signs and advertisements (again there are however rules surrounding these) and demolition. With the latter you will still need to get approval to demolish from your local planning authority before beginning.
In addition, in England you may not have to go through the usual planning permission process if your building project benefits your local community and is supported by that community.
You can get more information about permitted development rights on the Planning Portal website.
Keeping Planning Permission simple
As you’ve no doubt realised, planning permission is a complicated topic, and sometimes it can be difficult to work out whether you need to get planning permission or not, not to mention how to go about it. Unless your building project is particularly simple and straightforward, it can be very helpful to work with an architect who has a lot of experience in understanding planning permission requirements as well as navigating the process of applying for consent, often saving you from making costly mistakes. Someone who understands the system may also be able to help you to find ways to achieve consent for the work you want to undertake even when at first glance it appears that it is unlikely to be granted.
MSK Design has extensive experience helping clients in this regard and we would be more than happy to take away the burden of navigating the planning consent system on your behalf. Find out today how we can help you plan and realise your dream project.