Whether you’re going for a new study, gym, bedroom, or playroom, you’re probably wondering whether or not your garage conversion needs planning permission.
Unlike extensions, garage conversions are less about building new space, and more about better-utilising space already available to you. Because of this, planning policy for these projects is a little different.
Here’s everything you need to know…
Planning permission for garage conversions
So, will you need planning permission? Unlikely.
In fact, it’s estimated only 10% of garage conversions will require full planning permission. The rest will come under your permitted development rights. These rights ensure, as long as the work you’re carrying out is internal, and you’re not trying to enlarge the existing structure, you’re free to proceed to the building regulations stage.
However, as we say, 10% of you will need planning permission.
This will be the case if you live in a property that’s not covered by permitted development rights. Such as…
- Flats / maisonettes
- Listed buildings
- New developments
- Homes within a conservation area
Alongside this, you may also need planning permission if you’re changing a detached garage into a living space - such as a bedroom, living room, or small annexe.
If in doubt, either consult your local authority or ask your architect.
Lawful development certificate
Even if you don’t need to complete a full planning application, we still recommend you obtain a lawful development certificate.
A lawful development certificate isn’t a legal requirement, but they are incredibly worthwhile getting hold of. They essentially prove to both your local authority and future buyers that your project was legal at the point of construction. This protects you in the event planning policies change and means you can start construction with confidence.
So if you’re worried you may or may not be within your rights to convert your garage, this is the documentation for you!
While you might be able to avoid the uncertainties of planning permission, one admin stage you absolutely won’t be able to skip is building regulations.
During this stage, you’ll need to apply to either your local building control, or hire an approved inspector, to assess your building plans and verify your project will result in a space that is safe and healthy for you and your neighbours.
You’ll need to prove these elements are up to UK building regulations…
- Fire safety
- Noise insulation
- Windows and doors
- Insulation / ventilation
- Party walls
To name just a few!
Because of the different elements, you’ll need to cover, you’ll need more than one home expert to complete this stage. For instance, you might have an architect prepare your technical drawings, a structural engineer to handle structural calculations, and a party wall surveyor to get legal consent from your affected neighbours.
Learn more about building regulations here.
If you’re considering a garage conversion, but you’re not sure where to start, why not book in a call with our team? Our consultations are 100% free and allow you to explore everything from design ideas to budgeting.