Can I Use Permitted Development Rights on My
Most home owners are really excited about being able to build a home extension to their property that does not
require formal Planning permission.
When they find this out many think they can just 'crack on' and start the project on site without any
approach or prior checking with the Planning Dept.
This web site attracts a lot of people who have fallen into this trap and now find they have the
Enforcement or Compliance Officer knocking on their door requesting more in formation or demanding a retrospective
When this happens it is usually a matter of 'damage limitation' for the home owner with one of
GOOD AND BEST OUTCOME 1 - After investigation by others, the extension or building is deemed to
be PD compliant and the Planners go away happy without the need for any further council applications.
GOOD OUTCOME 2 - The homeowner is convinced by the Planners that submitting a
certificate of lawful development to prove and confirm PD required and the subsequent Certificate is then
NOT SO GOOD OUTCOME 3 - The homeowner is convinced by the Enforcement Officer that they made a
mistake at their interpretation of PD and that retrospective formal Planning Permission is in fact now
required within the next few weeks. An application is then submitted after the preparation of the required
drawings and other supporting reports and the scheme is granted formal Planning Consent retrospectively.
BAD OUTCOME 4 - The submission of a Certificate of Lawful Development to prove PD is
refused and now a retrospective Planning application is required. This may or may not be
approved. If refused you can usually appeal to the Planning Inspectorate that may or may not be later
BAD AND WORST OUTCOME 5 - The submission of a retrospective Planning application is refused
where you will then appeal to the Planning Inspectorate. If the appeal Inspector refuses the appeal you
normally then have to remove the extension or garden structure. At best the planners may accept a reduced or
modified version of the build.
All the above outcomes involve a level of worry and stress for the homeowner.
Outcomes 2 to 5 will usually involve the homeowner in extra costs, fees and other potential legal fees that can
HOW TO AVOID THESE SITUATIONS.
EASY - Employ a Professional and experienced Building and Planning Design Agent to obtain
the correct advice before you start and, if the development you are considering is PD compliant, then get them to
provide the necessary drawings and documents for the submission of a Certificate of Lawful Development to the
Council to secure a legally binding document confirming that what you want to build is safe as being PD compliant
WITHOUT the need for a formal Planning Consent.
If the homeowner has the right skills they can even do this themselves but its not recommended.
This is so easy and reliable but many homeowners 'penny pinch' avoiding an upfront fee and fall into these huge
PD bear traps. Time and time again I receive contacts from homeowners in this situation of having
started or built something suddenly finding out they are in a load of trouble with the Planning Dept.
Even the homeowners that get away with it at first end up falling foul of the system when they then sell on the
property and the required council proof of PD is nowhere to be seen. The house sale
usually falls through or has to be sold at a discount.
Watch this excellent overview video on the use of Permitted
Development from NextPhase.