hello, I have recently bought a disused old peoples home in wales. It is a large building which will have around 8 bedrooms when finished. Plans have been submitted and we are awaiting updates. The planning ap was made by a guy who was recommended to us but he usually does extensions apps etc.. I have just received a message from him stating that the local authority have stated that the development requires an AHC payment? this is totally new to me! they state 20%?….firstly the development is not a new build, it is basically a change of use to a single private dwelling! which we intend to live in. We are not devlopers, we simply want to move to a larger house with some of the finer things ie. snooker room and gym etc…
Granted the house is large…on a large site. We had not anticipated any extra expense….especially the possible amounts involved…are we really expected to make such a payment? any advice would be greatly appreciated…how should we approach this scenario, as essentially if they want a substantial payment we wont be able to afford it…many thanks

  • Rebecca Clutton

    Hi, I believe a conversion is unfortunately subject to an affordable housing contribution – I would suggest you scour your local authority’s website but I’ll warn you now, it won’t be straightforward!! An announcement is imminent regarding exemption for self builders but I don’t know if this will include converted properties. If you google "affordable housing contribution exemption" you may find some more info. Good luck.

  • Jeremy Murfitt

    I am not upto speed with the finer points of the law/regulations relocating to affordable housing contributions but it does seem odd to impose it on a change of use application. I had always thought that contributions were applied where the there is an increase in the number of dwellings. If the LPA have introduced this via policies in their adopted Local Plan it will be interesting on what the 20% applies to. The % usually relates to the number of affordable dwellings to be be built in this case it sounds as if they want 20% as a financial contribution. 20% of what? The purchase price of the property, of the house when converted, the plot value. More likely would be 20% of the value of a suitable plot in the locality. Not sure but I would start by going through their web site and understanding what polices they have on affordable housing.

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