I am looking to buy a two bed detached bungalow on greenbelt land. I understand under the new permitted development rights I could build a extension out the back of the property upto 8m and a side extension no more than 50% of the house original width but can I do this on both sides of the House? I.e. build on 3 sides of the property? I know it cannot be In front of the original dwelling nor near any boundaries but it is a 3 acre plot with tiny original dwelling so would like to build the maximum allowed. Thank you
The fight to generate a useable instrument for Permitted Development looks like it is about to end with a reasonable result for all. After a ‘Ping Pong’ of proposals and amendments between the House of Commons and the House of Lords the end is nigh. On 25th April the Growth and Infrastructure Bill was granted Royal Assent and became the Growth and Infrastructure Act 2013.
The proposal to double the current Permitted Development Lengths of Extensions is likely to come into force shortly with some common sense restrictions. They will not be applicable in Conservation Areas (though the current PD rights for Conservation areas remain) and the Local Council will still be able to introduce Article 4 Directions (the removal of PD rights for a particular property) but they will allow development significantly larger than is currently permitted.
In essence a home owner wishing to build an extension will write to the local planning authority providing plans and a written description of the proposal. The local authority will then notify the adjoining neighbours – for example, the owners or occupiers of properties that share a boundary, including those at the rear. Those neighbours will have 21 days in which to make an objection, the same period as under existing planning rules. If no neighbours object, the home owner will be able to proceed. If any neighbour raises an objection, the local authority will then consider whether the impact of the proposed extension on the amenity of neighbours is acceptable. No planning fee will be levied on the home owner making the notification and if approval is not given, the home owner will be able to appeal against a refusal, or may wish to submit a full planning application. As with normal planning consents, neighbours will not be able to appeal against a grant of permission.
In summary if you wish to extend within the limits of the proposed PD Rights and your neighbours do not object you will be free to do so after giving them 21 days to object.
This will no doubt be introduced as a new Statutory Instrument in the coming weeks or months.
It’s a good result but homeowners still need to think about ensuring their neighbours retain their ‘right to light’ as this might yet scupper the most ambitious plans and simply getting the go ahead in 21 days will mean there will be many homeowners that are tempted take short cuts and construct without full Building Control pre-approval. Go there at your peril as the Building Control requirements to build ever greener homes means that the Builder that builds ‘the same extension he built last year will fall short of these new standards.
Stephen Green is a Partner at Holland and Green Architectural Design – An Architectural Design Practice that specialises in Extensions and Loft Conversions and are recognised as being leaders in PD rights understanding.