Permitted development rights: Expert insight on the 2020 rule changes
October 20, 2020
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October 20, 2020
Understanding permitted development rights shouldn’t be a headache. However, when homeowners start to look into what they can and can’t do to their own homes without planning permission, things start to get confusing.
That’s why, with new rules coming into effect during September 2020, we’re going to focus on what’s changed and what it means for property owners going forward. So, just before you start, consider this top tip from our Checkatrade planning expert Steve Walker, owner of Parkers Design (Southern)
“This is a really exciting time for homeowners wishing to extend their homes and whilst we live in unprecedented times, the government has acted swiftly to utilise the Prior Approval process to keep the housing market stimulated by these new PD measures. I always remind any homeowner to ensure they gain Prior Approval prior to their project commencing – we do see occasionally where PD is taken out of context and the correct “permissions” have not been sought.”
However, this doesn’t mean you’re not subject to other conditions and limitations via your local planning authority, which is why talking to a professional – such as an architect or designer – before undertaking any works is advised.
All potential limitations are in place to reduce any undue impact on your neighbours and uphold local amenity. For example, certain rear extensions need neighbour consultation before works can commence. And if you live in a grade listed building or conservation area, there may be further restrictions.
Depending on the works carried out, each property adaption falls under different permitted development categories.
Some jobs include:
“To be permitted development, a proposal must meet all the limitations and conditions under each Class relevant to the proposal. Therefore, it is essential that any proposed household development is considered in the context of the permitted development rules as a whole in order to determine whether it benefits from permitted development rights and therefore does not require an application for planning permission.“
The Government have introduced two new pieces of legislation that cover both flats and houses. The overarching theme is to build upwards instead of outwards and avoid disrupting the green belt.
Planning takes time. To combat this, the government introduced a new fast-track measure that speeds up the development process – be it a block of flats or a new single-family home. Those who own vacant or redundant freestanding buildings up to 1000 square metres can apply. The new project needs to maintain the footprint of the original home, be a maximum of 18 metres tall and at least two-storeys higher than the former building.
The Government’s aim with these changes is to boost the construction sector and make it easier for homeowners to extend their homes. They are also utilising brownfield land, which is economically and environmentally viable for cities and towns.
Other benefits include:
Sadly, any permitted development undertaken before you purchased your property still counts towards its PD allocation. Regulation is through something called ‘prior approval’ via your local authority. The new 2020 rules state they need to assess your property before works start, allowing the local authority to ensure their guidelines are met and your project’s impact is assessed appropriately.
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Understanding permitted development rights shouldn’t be a headache. However, when homeowners start to look into what they can and can’t do to their own homes without planning permission, things start to get confusing. That’s why, with new rules coming into effect during September 2020, we’re going to focus on what’s changed and what it means...Continue reading