2013 Buildings and Extensions Regulations

2013 Buildings and Extension Regulations

Since May 30th 2013 a new regime has been in place for single storey buildings and extensions and will continue until May 30th 2016. An associated ‘neighbourhood consultation scheme’ has also been put in place. Buildings and extensions as new additions to your existing house are now considered to be ‘permitted developments’, not requiring the planning applications which applied before in similar circumstances. However the ‘permitted developments’ concerned fall into the following limits.

  • No more than half the area of the land around the original property can be covered by  additional buildings and extensions.
  • No buildings and extension is allowed which advances forward of the main or side elevation fronting a highway is permitted
  • No building or extension is permitted which extends above the highest part of the roof
  • Buildings and extensions to attached houses must not extend more than three metres beyond the rear wall of the original house. In the case of a detached house the permitted distance is four metres. But in certain circumstances and subject to the new ‘neighbourhood consultation scheme’ buildings and extensions may sometimes be permitted to extend even further.
  • The maximum permitted height permitted for a single storey rear buildings and extension is now four metres
  • Buildings and extensions of more than one storey must not be more than three metres beyond the rear wall of the existing house
  • Within two metres of the boundary the maximum eaves height for buildings and extensions is limited to two metres
  • The eaves height for buildings and extensions must not exceed that of the existing house
  • Any buildings and extensions at the side of existing structures are limited to single stories with a maximum height of four metres with a width not exceeding half that of the existing house
  • Two storey buildings and extensions much be no closer than seven metres to the rear boundary
  • Any building and extension should have a roof pitch matching that of the original house
  • The materials used in buildings and extensions must be similar in appearance and character to those in the existing house
  • No balconies or verandas or raised platforms must be involved
  • Side facing windows must have obscure glazing and any openings must be 1.7 metres above the floor
  • In the case of designated land, no buildings and extensions higher than one storey, no side extensions, and no cladding of the exterior are permitted

The term ‘original house’ (we sometimes refer to it as ‘existing house’ or ‘original or existing property’), is defined as the house as it appeared on July 1st 1948. Readers should also note that although you may not have introduced a building or extension to the property a previous owner may have done. ‘The term ‘designated land’ includes World Heritage Sites, Conservation Areas, Areas of Outstanding Natural Beauty, The Broads, and National Parks

Neighbourhood Consultation Scheme for Buildings and Extensions

The new neighbourhood consultation scheme applies only to larger single storey buildings and extensions and continues for the period 30th May 2013 to 30th May 2016. This means that any extension measuring between four and eight metres (in the case of a detached house) and three and six meters for other houses must go through the consultation process. Different rules apply to flats. Further details about the size limits are available from your Local Authority. You are strongly advised to read the technical guidance which is available in Government Documents. Advice is also available from the local authority Planning Department as to how to organise  the consultation process.