Sunday, 5 December 2010


You maybe considering extending or altering your house to avoid the currently rocky house buying and selling market. If so, have you considered whether you need planning permission or not?   

Permitted Development Rights were introduced in 2008 and there are changes and additions you can make to your home without having to apply for planning permission. This is a great help if you are extending on a tight budget and/or timescale! The following are the key rules to stick to:

You can extend your house without planning permission if you are not covering more than half the area of land around the ORIGINAL house. The extension must not be forward of the front elevation or side elevation if visible from the road.

You can build a single storey extension up to 3 metres out from the rear of your house and up to 4 metres high without planning permission. If your house is detached and the extension is single storey this increases to 4 metres out from the rear.

Even 2 Storey extensions can be built without planning permission if they do not extend more than 3 metres to the rear of the house and are no higher than the highest part of the roof and a minimum of 7 metres from the rear boundary.

Side extensions have to be single storey to avoid planning permission and a maximum of 4 metres high and no more than half the width of the ORIGINAL house.

There are also rules to be followed regarding matching existing materials, roof pitch and first floor side windows.  Be aware too of ‘rights of light’ from your neighbours’ windows.  It is worth noting that for listed buildings and houses in conservation areas different rules apply details of which can be found on the government’s Planning Portal (

If you can fit your extension into what is considered to be permitted development you may well save yourself both time and money.