Home improvements that don’t need Planning Permission

Home improvements that don’t need Planning Permission

If you have been thinking about carrying out any kind of home improvements, one of the things you may have been worried about is going through the potentially lengthily planning permission application only to find your endeavours fruitless. We know that planning permission can be a contentious issue for some homeowners, that’s why here at Opun we can take care of planning permission applications on your behalf.

What you may not be aware of however, is that some home improvements don’t always need planning permission if they are considered ‘Permitted Development’. Carrying out improvements that are covered by PD you could substantially speed up your whole project by avoiding the need to apply for planning permission. Here’s just a small list of changes you may be able to make under the rules of Permitted Development:

external shot of home extension

Add a single storey extension or conservatory

Up until 2019 homeowners are allowed to add extensions under PD at twice the size normally permitted. This means you can add up to an 8 metre extension to a detached home, or 6 metres to an attached property. There are a few specific rules to follow such as; any materials used should be similar to those of the existing structure and if the extension will sit within two metres of a boundary then it cannot be higher than three metres.

Convert your loft

Loft conversions are a great way to add space to your home, effectively allowing you add an entire storey to your home. Providing your loft is less than 40 cubic metres in area you may not require planning permission even including the addition of dormer windows as long as they are not higher than the highest part of your roof.

Construct outbuildings

As long as you have sufficient land at the back of your property then certain kinds of outbuilding including home offices, sheds, summerhouses and detached garages may be permitted. The general rule is that you don’t need planning permission as long as total area that will be covered by outbuildings does not exceed 50% of the property’s total outside area. However, you need to include any existing extensions attached to your property as part of this calculation as well.

Open-plan kitchen with large sliding patio doors

Remodel the inside

Permitted Development generally allows full interior remodelling, including the removal of interior walls if you wished to create an open-plan space or swapping rooms into other areas of the house, so long as you are fully compliant with the relevant building regulations, so if you wanted to move your kitchen or bathroom you may be able to.

Turn two houses into one

Turning connected flats or houses into one property may not require planning permission. So, if next-door goes up for sale you could buy it and knock through, doubling the size of your home all under the facets Permitted Development. Interestingly enough if you wanted to do the opposite and split a building into two or more distinct properties then you would need to first get permission from the Planning Office.  

Before you start

While the rules surrounding Permitted Development are more flexible than many realise, before carrying out any kind of building work it is always wise to first consult the local planning office to make sure Permitted Development is applicable in your case. Local authority’s may in some cases have revoked permitted development rights, and factors such as whether a property is a listed building or if it is within a designated Area of Outstanding Natural Beauty can also affect what you can do with a property.

To find out more about the specific regulations surrounding Permitted Development you can download the government’s guide by clicking here: https://www.gov.uk/government/publications/permitted-development-rights-for-householders-technical-guidance

Speak to Opun today to learn more about home improvements