Designing and Planning Your Changes

As mentioned in our Services section, we have design and planning capability which includes everything from initial ideas and space planning consultancy and preliminary meetings with duty planning officers with sketches, through to submission of Full Plans Applications.

Planning Permission

- is generally required when you wish to alter the external appearance of your property and it would therefore affect the way it looks to your neighbours. It is also usually required if you change the size or 'bulk' of your property. It is always advisable to check with the local authority planning department before you to attempt to make changes. Further information regarding planning law can be found at the Governments Planning Portal Link.

If planning permission is required then you will need to submit drawings showing the current and proposed changes you wish to have built with an accompanying planning application and appropriate fee to the local authority.

Building Regulations Approval

- is required when you wish to make changes to your property which affect it's structure. i.e. take down a loadbearing wall between two rooms to make them one.  Planning permission and Building Regulations Approval often go hand in hand, if for example you are building an extension but not necessarily so. We would strongly recommend you discuss this with us, or the local authority before you start work.

In order to obtain building regulations approval it is necessary to submit detailed drawings showing the current and proposed changes you require and these are often accompanied by an engineers specification of materials with supporting calculations.

Generally speaking it is sensible to make the building regulations application only once planning permission has been granted. i.e. there is no point in paying for detailed drawings and an engineers fee if there is no chance that the planners will approve the look/shape/size of the new extension you want.

Building Notices

Full building regulations approval can take 4-6 weeks depending on the number of queries and clarifications your local Building Control may request before it is granted. There are however instances where the work can be carried out under a Building Notice which means that while the work is still inspected as it progresses by the Building Control Officer, the application time is shorter. Notice to start work is generally only a couple of days and it relies on the building contractor being confident that the work is being carried out in a way that will meet the current building regulations.

The downside is that a completion certificate is not issued by Building Control once the work is finished.

At BuildWorX we have experience in both Full Plans Application projects and work carried out under Building Notices. We can help you decide which approach is best suited to your particular needs.