16th Sep 2022|Commercial|Land|BTR & Asset Management|Estate Management|

Do I Need Planning Permission On My Land?

Land law can often be complicated to follow, especially for those delving into selling their plot or extending their property for the first time. That’s why Centrick is here to help you make sense of one of the most prominent aspects of land law: planning permission. In this piece, we’ll be running you through everything you need to know about planning permission: from what it actually means, to when it’s necessary, and what to do if you are denied permission to develop your land!

What is planning permission?

Simply put, planning permission is a request put forward by a land or property owner to their local council authority to complete building work that may impact your neighbourhood or environment. If your proposed work is likely to disrupt others, you’ll probably need permission to carry it out! Properties that come with planning permission already granted are also deemed more desirable on the sales market, making it worthwhile for sellers and vendors to consider applying for permission to give their listing a boost.

When is planning permission needed?

There are three occasions when planning permission is deemed necessary:

  • If you’re planning to build something entirely new
  • If you’re making a large change to an existing building, such as an extension
  • If you’re wanting to change the use of your building e.g. converting a residential property to a commercial one.

Permission is required in these instances to ensure that buildings are fit for purpose, and that any proposed amendments will not be to the detriment of the surrounding neighbourhood and environment.

When is planning permission not needed?

Amends to land or property that do not require planning permission are called permitted developments. So, for example, any minor landscaping to your private garden, or painting the outside of your property is deemed a permitted amendment, so long as you own the land and property in question.

In most cases, you do not need permission for the following scenarios:

  • Amends to industrial complexes or warehouses
  • To erect some signage for advertising purposes (these require different permissions)
  • Demolitions (although you do need to talk to your Local Planning Authority)
  • Most single-storey residential extensions

Generally, if your project does not impact your surrounding neighbourhood or environment, you aren’t likely to require planning permission. If in doubt, contact your Local Planning Authority to verify. Struggling to locate your Local Planning Authority? Follow this link and insert your postcode to find out what your LPA is!

In some cases, you may not require planning permission, but Building Regulations Approval. This typically pertains to any amendments to your property that happen indoors, such as the replacement of windows, implementation of air conditioning systems, or roof amends. Check the Planning Portal website here to find your project and see what kind of approval you require from your local council bodies, if any

How do I apply for planning permission?

If you require planning permission to carry out your proposed works, you must contact your Local Planning Authority with a proposal of your intended works for them to review. This review stage takes approximately eight weeks, and your LPA should have a decision for you within this time.

If your project is predicted to be of great benefit to your local neighbourhood, you could apply to make a neighbourhood plan, which is where your community grants planning permission directly. There are over 2,000 local groups set up across the UK that bring local people together to have a say in the future of their neighbourhood. You may be able to access financial grants and technical support packages via the application process on Neighbourhood Planning if your proposed works are approved by the neighbourhood.

What happens if I don’t obtain planning permission?

In some cases, requests for planning permission are denied. If your proposed works are deemed too disruptive to your neighbours, are likely to have a negative impact on nearby house prices, or could be detrimental to your local ecosystem, your Local Planning Authority have the right to refuse you permission to execute your works.

If you do not obtain planning permission, you can work alongside your Local Planning Authority to come to a consensus regarding your planned amends: this forms part of the appeals process. You can also issue an appeal if you believe your Local Planning Authority has been non-responsive to your request and has not provided you with an answer within the usual 8 to 13 week time period in which they are expected to reply.

In some scenarios, if you believe that your Local Planning Authority has led to you missing deadlines or losing out financially, you can even claim funds back from them. However, they can also claim funds back from you if you have been overly disruptive or time wasting. You may even be served an enforcement notice that asks you to deconstruct or undo any changes you have made if you choose to ignore your Local Planning Authority.

Think you require planning permission?

Centrick’s team of experts are here to help you make sense of the often-confusing processes pertaining to land law and property amends permissions. For more information on how we can help guide you towards making the most informed choice about your property or plot of land, simply contact our team of experts below:

Land Owner Enquiry

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