Do I need building regulations?
In England and Wales, the Building Regulations apply to defined building work and they set standards for the design and construction of buildings to ensure the safety and health for those in or about those buildings.
What are Building Regulations?
Building Regulations exist to ensure that building work meets minimum standards in the following areas:
- Energy Conservation
- Access and Facilities for disabled persons.
Is Building Regulations Approval the same as planning permission?
Building Regulations approval is a separate matter from obtaining planning permission for the work you may wish to carry out. In certain cases, you may not require planning permission but will require meeting building regulations.
What work will require Building Regulations?
Most building work will require building regulations permission. This is a different requirement to planning permission, and must be applied for separately.
It is important if you intend to carry out building work that you seek advice from your local authority Building Control at an early stage before you start the work.
This will establish if your proposals are subject to the requirements of Building Regulations and whether or not you will need to make an application.
Information about how the Regulations might apply to various types of building projects can be accessed through a visual interactive guide.
Permission is required for:
- Construction of new buildings, such as dwellings, shops, offices, factories, and all other major buildings
- Most extensions to buildings, with the exception of porches or conservatories
- Structural alterations, such as removing a load-bearing wall
- Installation of heating, hot water and air conditioning systems
- Installing additional bathroom fittings
- Domestic electrical installations
- Alterations to drainage systems
- Replacing windows, doors or roof lights
- Underpinning a building
- Renovating a thermal element e.g. walls, floors and roofs
- Changing the energy status of a building
- Changing the use of a building e.g. barn conversions
Permission is not required for: ( click here for more information [111kb])
- Detached buildings with a floor area not exceeding 30m2, which do not contain sleeping accommodation, and are located at least one metre away from the boundary of the property, or are made out of mostly non-combustible materials. Porches or conservatories with a floor area not exceeding 30m2. Carports open on at least two sides.
- Covered walkways.
- Most agricultural buildings, if they are away from houses and have a good means of escape in case of fire.
- Temporary buildings that are not intended to remain in place for more than 28 days.
However, for domestic work, even if a building is exempt from Building Regulations Approval, you may still need to comply with Part of the Building Regulations, which covers electrical safety.
You can find more information about building regulations from the national planning portal website.
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