Planning Permission Requirements for your Timber Frame Garage, Carport and other Outbuildings

This page will hopefully provide a quick, easy and useful introductory guide to Planning requirements for your SolidLox Buildings. However, it must be regarded as just a guide and not advice.

In the UK, planning cannot be regarded as an exact science for which some pre-prescribed formula will yield known results. Here, each and every planning requirement has to be assessed individually and on its own merits. We always recommend that you should check with your Local Planning Authority (LPA).

Your Rights to ‘Permitted Development’

In October 2008, changes took place granting ‘permitted development’ rights to UK property owners. This meant that for many cases, where small developments were proposed, application for planning permission was no longer necessary – providing certain specific conditions were observed.

Planning for Outbuildings

Timber Frame Outbuildings: Summerhouses, Home OfficesIn general, outbuildings are considered as ‘permitted development,’ and do not therefore need planning permission, providing:-

  • They do not project in front of any wall that forms part of the ‘principle elevation’.
  • They are of single storey construction, no more than 2.5 metres high at the eaves, no more than 4 metres high at the ridge if they have a dual pitch roof, or 3 metres if they have any other form of roof.
  • Any building, enclosure or container within 2 metres of the boundary is not more than 2.5 metres high.
  • There are no raised platforms, balconies, or verandas.
  • At least half the area surrounding the ‘original house’ remains uncovered by other buildings or additions.
  • Any pools, enclosure, or container sited over 20 metres from a house in a National Park, the Broads, an Area of Outstanding Natural Beauty, or a World Heritage Site is limited to 10 square metres.
  • On ‘designated’ land (see below) planning permission is required for buildings, enclosures, containers and pools at the side of a property.
  • Any outbuilding sited inside the curtilage of a listed building will require planning permission.
  • You obtain planning permission for erecting any high walls or fences.

Note that there are separate rules for constructing new roofs.

Planning for Car Ports

Timber Frame Oak CarportsBecause they are considered to be ‘temporary structures’, car ports don’t generally require planning approval. The same applies to some ready-made, or ‘kit’ garages. However, you will need to observe a number of other regulations, for example, if the structure is to be closer to the road than the front of your house.

You’ll also need to comply with any applicable building regulations, like being at least a metre from the boundary’ although in general terms building regulations do not apply to detached single storey structures located more than a metre from the boundary. Providing they are open on at least two sides and have a floor area of not more than 30 square metres, car ports do not need building regulations approval.

Planning for a Garage

Timber Frame Oak GaragesProviding your proposals meet certain size and location considerations, and providing a vehicular access to a drive and/or parking space already exists, you may be deemed to have ‘permitted development’ rights. This means you will not need to apply for planning permission for a garage unless Conservation Area, or Listed Building orders affect your property.

Planning for a Room Above

If you want to build a second storey on top of your garage / Carport, you may well need planning permission, and or Building Regulations approval depending on your intended use of the space. Your planners may also want you to set the building back from the front of any existing building so that it won’t be over dominant, or affect any other considerations, especially the visual aspects of your property. Generally these need to be in keeping with surrounding properties.

So to Sum up

While it is always best to check with your Local Planning Authority (LPA), as a general guide you will require formal planning and/or other consents if:-

  • Your property is a ‘listed’ building and your proposals affect this or are to be built in its grounds.
  • If your project lies inside an ‘Area of Outstanding Natural Beauty’ (AONB), a Conservation Area, a National Park, or equivalent.
  • Your intended development is closer than the nearest part of the original house to the highway.
  • You intend to build it within 5 metres of the ‘original house’.
  • Your proposed ridge height will be higher than 4 metres.
  • Your project lies within an area where planning permission is required for an agricultural building.

This information is taken from The Benfield ATT Groups article "Obtaining Planning Permission for Ancillary Structures"

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