Planning Regulations Set To Change

December 2012 saw a major shake up in planning regulations with ministers beginning a consultation on relaxing the rules on extensions for homes and businesses for a minimum three-year period

The plans were to let people build larger loft conversions and extensions on houses without needing to get permission from local planning officers in non protected (i.e. conservation) areas. It would double the permitted length of extensions to eight metres for detached homes and six metres for others, although it would retain the rule that extensions should not take up more than half the garden. If you need any clarification on this or any self build help please get in touch.

While clearly this was a big boost for the construction industry and homeowners looking to extend rather than move the main stumbling block is whether the development would have had an unacceptable impact on neighbours’ amenity with no way of objecting.

On Monday parliament announced it will seek to move ahead with these new permitted development rights but to introduce a new light-touch neighbours consultation scheme

  1. Homeowners wishing to build extensions under the new powers would notify their local council with the details.
  2. The council would then inform the adjoining neighbours – this already happens for planning applications.
  3. If no objections are made to the council by the neighbours within a set period, the development can proceed

If objections are raised by neighbours, the council will consider whether the development would have an unacceptable impact on neighbours’ amenity.

  • This is a form of ‘prior approval’ process which allows for consideration by ward councillors, and (if the council wishes) by a Planning Committee.
  • There will be no fee for householders to go through this process.

If you are thinking of taking advantage of the new regulations be aware that your insurer may not wish to insure you particularly if you decide to move out until the work is completed. If you are undertaking an extension to your property contact us at for a quotation or to ask about self build help.

photo courtesy of stock.xchng


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