planning permission

Drawing up building plans is exciting as you imagine the new build to come. Everything that is constructed, however, is subject to planning permission from your local planning authority (LPA).

If you don’t have the right permission in place, you risk being ordered to demolish any building work and being fined – or facing a long battle with the authorities if you decide to appeal.

When you hire Kennet Design to oversee your building project from start to finish we handle all the planning applications at a professional level as part of the service, but if you are going to take your building plans forward yourself you may be interested to know something about the complicated planning process.

What is Planning Permission

The planning permission system is in place to prevent willy-nilly, inappropriate and unscrupulous building development from taking place, ensuring that anything that is built in a particular area is in the best interests of the residents.

Whether you are just adding on a home extension or building a superstore you will probably need planning permission. Having said that, there are exceptions. Some minor improvements – like installing double glazing, adding cladding or a small porch, or converting a loft – may be allowed as “permitted development”.

If you’re not sure whether your project falls in the “permitted development” category, it’s wise to check with your local planning authority. Rules differ according to areas and the type of building involved. Then, don’t forget, listed buildings are a whole different ball game with their own set of regulations.

Note: Your project may well also require Building Regulations Approval from your local authority.

Making a Planning Application

Planning applications are usually submitted online through the Planning Portal (www.planningportal.co.uk) on a standard form.

You need to make sure you are applying for the correct type of consent or multiple consents for your building project – there are a whole range of different consents available. The Kennet Design team can advise you, or you can download explanatory documents on the Planning Portal website.

Your application will have to include all sorts of supporting documents such as property ownership proof, site plans, location plans, a design and access statement and the correct application fee.

How Planning Applications are evaluated

The LPA will take a number of material considerations into account when considering your application. These includes things like the impact your build will have on parking and noise levels; whether it will result in overlooking another property and cause loss of light. They’ll weigh up the design and appearance of the build, and whether there have been previous planning decisions. Neighbours will be invited to comment.

Most straightforward Planning Applications take about three months to be dealt with, and most are granted.

If your Planning Permission is turned down you have the right of appeal, and around 40% of general household applications that were initially refused end up being granted on appeal.

You can save yourself a great deal of trouble by leaving your planning permission in the hands of the professional Planning Consultants at Kennet Design. We know how to plan and design anything from a complete new house to a home extension in such away that planning approval is almost a foregone conclusion.

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