24 January 2020

Planning Permission: What you Need to Know

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What is planning permission?

  • Gaining consent from your local authority on a proposed project.
  • Ensures that inappropriate development practise is discouraged

An architect can help you with submitting planning permission and other elements of the decision-making process.

Do I Need Planning Permission?

If you’re looking to make significant alterations to your existing building then the answer is yes. Planning permission is required when the use of a building is being changed, and may be required for smaller home improvements also.

However, certain classes of alterations fall under ‘permitted development’. Permitted Development rights mean that certain building work can be carried out without going through planning permission. Whilst most houses have permitted development rights, flats and maisonette’s do not. Buildings that are based within conservation areas, national parks or an area viewed to have outstanding natural beauty the rights become more restricted. Permitted development rights do mean though that minor extensions, minor demolition and certain changes of use such as loft, garage and cellar conversions are usually covered.

If your change of use does not require planning permission, it may still mean that your project needs building regulations.

What Will I Need to Submit?

Site plans, location plans, elevations if there are any alterations to the facades, supporting documentation, an application form and the correct fee.

What Could Prove to be an Issue with my Application?

There are a number of factors that will be taken into account when approving a planning permission request. These include: the size of the alterations, the layout, the sitting and external appearances of the building, any loss of light, the infrastructure available (e.g. roads and water supply), any landscaping needs, how the development would affect the surrounding area (would it create more traffic? Result in significant increase in noise levels?), parking, highway safety, the impact on listed buildings in the area, and also the opinions of your neighbours.

If your application is rejected, you are able to amend and resubmit your plans and appeal the decision.

How Long Will it Take?

On average, it takes up to 8 weeks to receive a decision from your local authority. This cam sometimes take up to 13 weeks. Once you have gained approval, there is an expiration date for how long this approval lasts. You have to begin building works within 3 years of gaining this approval.

If you need any advice with submitting for planning permission do not hesitate to contact us on: admin@ra-architects.co.uk or 01633 744 144