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Planning permission: A complete guide

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Planning permission: A complete guide

If you’ve been considering building something, whether a whole new property or an addition to an existing property, you have probably seen the term “planning permission” mentioned in more than a few places – especially if you’ve been busy researching in preparation for your construction project. Here, we provide a comprehensive but to-the-point guide to the subject of planning permission.

When do you need planning permission?

You probably won’t be surprised to learn that the Government’s website includes its own useful guide to planning permission. So, what does that guide say? It says, for a start, that you will perhaps need planning permission if you are eager to do one of three things: build something new, like a completely new property; make a significant change to an existing building, like creating an extension; or change the purpose which an existing building is currently put to.

However, you might remain uncertain whether the particular project you intend to work on genuinely requires planning permission – in which case, you could get in touch with your local planning authority, otherwise known as an LPA. And, if your project will be in Scotland, Wales or Northern Ireland, researching how the planning system works in that particular part of the UK can also be worthwhile. Planning permission can be applied for through the Planning Portal website.

We like to help our customers to avoid nasty surprises; our provision of accurate build estimates, for example, can help you to avoid unexpected expenses with your construction project. And we would also urge you to, before going ahead with your project, discern whether it definitely needs planning permission. That’s because, if you forgo planning permission but undergo work for a project that actually needs it, you could be hit with an “enforcement notice” ordering that the work is undone.

After you have sent your application

Once you’ve submitted your application for planning permission, your LPA will look over details about your project to judge whether to grant that planning permission. The LPA will also consider its own development plan. It will consider, for example, the infrastructure, such as water supply and roads, in the area; the use that you intend for the development; and how the surrounding area would be affected by that development. Would it lead to significantly more traffic?

It takes less than 8 weeks for most planning applications to be decided. However, if your application is unusually complex or large and for a project in England, the time limit is 13 weeks. Should your application take longer than this to be decided, you have the option to appeal.

Once you have obtained planning permission

Naturally, it’s great news if you reach this stage. However, for long term success, you should still pay close attention to how much money your construction project will cost. Thankfully, as we mentioned earlier, we can provide accurate estimates for how large the financial expense for your project will be. Our website includes details about how you can contact us to obtain these estimates.

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