What if I start work before I receive a Certificate of Compliance?
If you cannot wait for our decision, then you should apply for planning permission or a Lawful Development Certificate. It is not an option to apply for a Certificate of Compliance for works that you have already started, even if you are sure that what you have built fully complies with the LDO.
Is the Community Infrastructure Levy (CIL) still payable if I opt for the LDO?
The same rules apply, whether you choose to make a planning application, or choose to use the LDO. No specific relief from CIL is provided by the LDO. You should check whether CIL is payable before you start to build.
Do I have to use the LDO, or can I choose to make a planning application?
You can choose to make a planning application if you would prefer. It is the case that the application fee for a Certificate of Compliance is more than for a planning application, however we feel this is fair because of the speed and predictability benefits of the LDO.
What if my neighbour writes to the Council to object to my application for a Certificate of Compliance?
We shall not be considering neighbour or other comments, unless we specifically asked for them. An example of when we may ask for comments could be if we have a question about the access, or contaminated land, in which case we would write to the experts responsible (such as the County Council as highway authority)
Should I still use the planning pre-application service if I want to make an application to use the LDO?
There is nothing to stop you from using the Council’s pre-application service, however this is not compulsory.
Do I still need Building Regulations approval?
Yes, you definitely will need Building Regulations approval, and you may need other approvals as well. These are listed in the LDO itself, however there may be additional things to consider, such as the Party Wall Act. It is your responsibility to check that you have complied with everything necessary, before you start work
How can I be sure whether I live in one of the areas that are excluded from the LDO?
You can check the coverage of the LDO here (insert hyperlink to LDO map) and the LDO itself sets out exclusions that are specific to the LDO only. You can use our online mapping to see if your property has any of the constraints listed in the LDO. If you are in doubt about whether your property is excluded from the LDO or not, you can submit a Basic Enquiry.
What should I do if I believe my neighbour is building an extension that is not in accordance with the LDO?
You should report a suspected breach of planning to us, in the usual way, by completing an enforcement form. We will then investigate the suspected breach of planning.
Why can I not comment on my neighbour’s proposed extension?
We have considered the LDO very carefully, and believe that the safeguards that we have put in place are adequate to protect neighbours from unsuitable development.
For instance, we require windows in side elevations to be either obscure glazed or raised above the internal floor, to tackle overlooking. We also require extensions to be inset from the side boundary, to reduce overshadowing, and in an effort to reduce the risk of Party Wall issues.
We have carefully considered the issues that we would consider when determining a planning application, and have devised a set of rules to protect neighbours while still allowing domestic extensions to be built.
Where can I find out more about the LDO?
The following links are to the relevant and supporting documents, including the LDO itself, and the application form.