Posted on: 29th June 2022


Planning permission can be a confusing process, especially if you’re unsure whether you even need it or not. The trouble lies in the sheer volume of legislation that applies to planning permissions, with some details differing between different councils and certain exemptions in place which might mean you don’t even need to apply in the first place.

When do I need planning permission?

Planning permissions are needed for work on an existing building or when building a new one. They’re also required for some outbuildings such as garages and extensions. You should make sure that you have the correct permissions before starting any building work, in order to avoid having it stopped later.

If you don’t understand what type of planning application is needed, ask your local council’s planning department for advice. They can explain what types of building work require permissions and give practical information about what needs to be included in your submission, where you can submit it and how long they’ll take to process it.

However, you may be wondering whether your small build project needs planning permission. There are plenty of builds which can fall within your ‘permitted development rights’ and therefore don’t require planning permission.

What are permitted development rights?

These are often the most popular home improvement projects such as extensions, loft conversions and outbuildings.

We can help you find out if you need planning permission – just contact us and send details about what you are planning.

You can also check the online resource – the UK government’s official home for planning and building regulations information for England and Wales. This has interactive mini guides for conservatories, single storey extensions, two storey extensions, loft conversions, outbuildings and porches. Choose your guide from the menu at the bottom of the page and use the blue arrows to click through the guides:

Does every property have the same permitted development rights?

Your permitted development rights may be affected if for example if you plan to build in a conservation area, a greenbelt area or an area of outstanding natural beauty. Permitted Development Rights can also be removed for certain properties through an Article 4 Directive. The Mini Guides above include some information on this, but if in doubt, do get in contact with us or your local authority.

If your project does not fall within your Permitted Development rights, you will need Planning Permission, and we can apply for this for you.

Are you planning a build project with a timber frame? If you have any questions about planning or need any other information about building with timber frames, please get in touch with us.