Gaining Planning Permission
If you are planning a self-build, renovation, extension or conversion of a property, you may need to look into gaining planning permission. So how do you actually go about securing planning permission? Many people find the process of gaining planning permission a daunting prospect - but with a few pointers you should soon be on your way to obtaining the planning permission that you need and commencing with your intended project(s).
The process of gaining planning permission starts with the submission of an application form to your local authority - along with in-depth details of your plans. The plans that you submit should include an Ordnance Survey site plan and a layout plan for your site. Ideally, the plans should be created by an experienced professional and should be of the best possible standard before they are submitted for approval.
You will also need to make a list of any materials that you intend to use in your project (i.e. stone, brick etc.). Finally, it's always a good idea to include a covering letter with your application, providing further details about your project and the end result you hope to achieve (including any benefits made possible by the work). When you apply for planning permission, a standard application fee will be required to cover processing costs.
Once your application for planning permission has been submitted, a planning officer will perform an initial assessment. During this stage, he/she will decide whether or not the project can be passed under his own delegated powers or if the application needs to go to the planning committee stage.
Your application will then be registered by a local authority - they will advise you as to the approximate duration of the decision period they require to fully assess your application. This timescale is usually based on government targets and can generally be no longer than eight weeks, however, they can ask for your approval to extend the decision schedule if they require more time to fully assess your application.
During the decision process, you can consult with the planning officer for advice on your project. Usually, they will be able to discuss any potential problems with you. You can also submit small changes to your plan during this phase (i.e. minor aesthetic details) however, this must be done prior to the final decision notice, or you will need to re-submit your planning application again from scratch.