No need for planning permission for larger extensions

Under the Town and Country Planning legislation, all additions to buildings need planning permission.

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Under the Town and Country Planning legislation, all additions to buildings need planning permission. However, the legislation recognises that smaller additions to buildings can be added without the need for a formal application to the local authority - so deemed planning permission is given under the General Permitted Development rules.

Under these 'general permitted development rights', homeowners have been allowed to build larger extensions to their properties since 2013 - this relaxation of the rules was initially only intended to be temporary. However, these rules have now been made permanent which means that larger extensions to property can be added without the need for planning permission.

Generally single-story rear extensions must not extend beyond the rear wall of the original house* by more than four metres if a detached house or more than three metres for any other house. However, in certain cases, the limit is increased to:

  • 8 metres if a detached house; or
  • 6 metres for any other house

* The term "original house" means the house as it was first built or as it stood on 1 July 1948 (if it was built before that date). Although the current owner may not have built an extension to the house, a previous owner may have done so.

The permitted development allowances described here apply to houses and not to:

  • Flats and maisonettes
  • Converted houses or houses created through the permitted development rights to change use
  • Other buildings
  • Areas where there may be a planning condition, Article 4 Direction or other restriction that limits permitted development rights.

The increased limits are subject to the neighbour consultation scheme which means that notice of the proposed changes must be given to neighbours who have the chance to object.

Anyone wishing to extend their home should check with their local planning department before carrying out any work and they may also need to take legal advice.

To discuss this or any other property related matter, contact us.

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