do you need planning permission for an extension

In such uncertain times, more and more people are opting to extend their homes as opposed to moving property due to rising interest rates and market instability. Generally speaking, it’s a much safer course of action to take and extending your home could add both value and additional space to your home.

If you are already sold on the idea of investing in an extension then the next step is to consider planning permission. You may be asking yourself the question of whether you need planning permission to extend your home. The answer: it depends on a number of factors such as the size of your extension and proximity to the boundary. This article outlines the planning requirements for extensions in the UK so you’ll now what to expect.

Do I need to obtain planning permission for an extension?

This article largely addresses extensions for houses rather than flats or listed buildings, so if you are in possession of one of these types of buildings then you may want to seek legal advice as not everything you read here will apply to your own unique situation.

Your extension may fall under what is called ‘permitted development.’ This means that an extension or addition to your home can be considered without the need for planning permission from your local authority. If you’re fortunate enough, you will fall within this category and won’t have to go through a lengthy planning permission process by submitting an application to your local council.
There are of course, limits to what you can legally do to fall into the permitted development category. There are criteria that you must adhere to and it is very much worth closely considering all of the following points before undertaking any sort of renovation or home extension project:

  • The size of your new extension cannot be more than the size of half the land surrounding the original house. This means when the property was originally constructed, so you’ll need to take into account any additions from previous owners.
  • Planning permission is required for any extension that, once finished, will sit closer to the public highway either from the front of your house or from the side. Therefore, rear extensions are much easier to carry out as they are not subject to this scrutiny.
  • An extension can’t be taller than the top part of your roof without planning permission. So, if you’re wanting to increase the height of your home, then you’ll need to submit a planning application.
  • A single-story extension to the rear of your home cannot extend beyond the far wall of the original house by over three metres if you’re in a semi-detached home, and by four metres if you own a detached house.
  • If you don’t want to seek planning permission, then ensure the height of your single-storey rear extension doesn’t exceed four metres.
  • For a double-storey extension, do not extend beyond the rear wall of your original house by over three metres to avoid submitting a planning application. They also can be no closer than seven metres to your rear boundary.
  • When it comes to side extensions, these must always remain single storey at no higher than four metres and wider than half the original house size to avoid planning permission.

You can always consult our builders in Surrey when deciding whether or not it might be necessary to go in for planning permission for your extension. While all of the points we’ve raised above are fundamental, there are a fair few more intricate ones that you might want to check with your local authority before commencing building work too.

Gaining planning permission for your extension might only be half the battle. There are other requirements in play that may be necessary before your works can commence. Some properties cannot be extended without the written consent of the original owner of the property’s consent due to various – albeit rare – covenants. Also, there are specific rules with regards to extending grade 2 listed buildings.

Furthermore, if your home already had an extension when you purchased it and you are planning to extend it further, then you might need a legal representative to just check things over to ensure you aren’t subject to any building regulations. Planning laws do frequently change so this is an important step that shouldn’t be overlooked to avoid any mishaps. 

If you’re in the market for a home extension in Surrey, then look no further. At Surrey Building Projects Ltd we provide cost-effective home renovations build for every client’s budget. We can help and advise you on whether your home falls into the category of being a permitted development. We work with customers across the county of Berkshire and have built up a notoriety for our high-quality and affordable extensions that can add serious value and additional floor space to a home.

Contact Us

Looking for a reliable building company in Surrey? Make Surrey Building Projects your first choice for all your building solutions in London and Surrey.