Do I need Planning Permission?

Permitted development

Certain types of work can be carried out without planning permission, as long as the works comply with certain rules and restrictions. This type of work is known as 'permitted development' .

Restrictions/allowances for 'permitted development'

The rules and regulations governing planning permission are lengthy and quite complex and the need for planning permission can be affected by a number of issues such as;

Where can I find out what these allowances/restrictions are?

For works to a house (other than to flats/bedsits) you can use the Planning Portal website where further information (including a very useful 'interactive house') can be found. The most common projects (i.e. conservatories / extensions / fences) are listed on the right-hand side of the planning portal page.

Once you have found the page relevant to what you want to do, you will be able to use the information on the screen to determine whether your proposed project needs a formal submission for planning permission or whether you can carry it out under 'permitted development'. However, it should be borne in mind that this will have no formal status in law and cannot be relied upon at a later stage. If you wish to have formal confirmation that the works you are carrying out are permitted development you can apply for a Certificate of Lawfulness (see below).

It is also worth checking your property deeds / transfer of title as there may be restrictive covenants in place which will restrict what you are able to do regardless of planning legislation.

Have the rules and regulations been relaxed recently?

Yes. For six years between May 30th 2013 and May 30th 2019, the government introduced legislation to relax the restrictions on single storey rear extensions.

You can find more out on this page: Neighbour Consultation Scheme re Larger Home Extensions.

I'm happy that I don't need planning permission, what do I do now?

If you believe you don't need planning permission from us, you might decide to carry out the proposed project, although, it should be borne in mind that this will have no formal status in law and cannot be relied upon at a later stage.

Please note that you may still require building regulations approval and you may still be liable to pay the Community Infrastructure Levy (CIL) if the development is a new dwelling or a residential or retail extension of over 100sqm in gross internal floor area.

I'm still not sure, how do I get it in writing whether I need permission?

Because the rules and regulations governing planning permission are lengthy and quite complex and because the need for planning permission can be affected by a number of issues we cannot give you an informal answer as to whether or not planning permission is needed for your specific proposal either on the phone, by letter, or in reception.

In the event that you either cannot assess for yourself whether you need planning permission or not, or if you would like us to confirm in writing whether you need planning permission or not, you will need to submit an application for what is known as a Certificate of Lawfulness for a proposed use or development (LDP).

The fee for this would be half of the normal planning fee and will take up to 8 weeks to be determined by a planning officer. The planning officer will consider all aspects of your proposal and provide a certificate which states whether your project is considered lawful under permitted development or not. You can apply using the Planning Portal or by downloading the relevant planning application form.

Bear in mind that should the officer determine that you need planning permission, you will need to submit a further application, this time for planning permission with the full planning fee for that proposal which will cost up to and over £172, and will take a further 8 weeks to determine. For information on current fees please see our planning application forms.

Are there any situations where permitted development rights are removed?

Yes, there are some cases where these rules and regulations do not apply and where development may need planning permission, for example, if the property;

Please use our 'maps online' service to find out more about specific issues relating to permitted development rights

If your property pre-dates 1974, you may need to perform a historic planning search using a new online application that the council are currently trialling.

If you need further help using these services, please ring 01327 322237 or email development.management@southnorthants.gov.uk.

Useful links:

Contact details

Planning Technical Support
Email this service
01327 322237

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