Planning permission & regulations

In April 2016 Permitted development rights changed. Here is what you need to know.

Planning permission - what you need to know

In the past planning permission legislation required a one metre gap between your building and any garden boundary if the internal floor area of your garden room was more than 15 sq metres. However that rule no longer applies.

If your building is less than 2.5 m in maximum height, you can now go up to 50% of the area of all your garden. This includes all of your land except the part that you house stands on, this also includes the front garden, side gardens and back garden, less the area of any other buildings, sheds etc.

There still exist a rule that no buildings are allowed in front of the front elevation of your house, but this has always been the case.

Previously people were only allowed 30 sq m maximum size rule. However this no longer applies and has been replaced by the 50% rule for garden rooms, provided they are only single storey. Happily your garden room can now be a lot bigger, depending on the original size of your garden size.If you live in a conservation area, then you cannot build at the front or side but, at least, you no longer need permission to have a garden room in the back garden. Before you had to ask for permission wherever it was sited, if you were in a conservation area.

If you would like to build within the garden of a Listed building then you will need full planning as before.

Within Areas of Outstanding Natural Beauty etc, the rules are the same as before, max size of 10sq metres and at least 20 metres away from the house.

Planning permission is always required if you intend for your garden room to be used as overnight accommodation. If you are intending to use your garden room for sleeping accommodation then building regulations will apply. 

Even if your do not intend to use your garden room as overnight accommodation but expect that at some stage a guest may stay over in it then you should consider fitting house regulation compliant, mains powered, smoke detectors with battery back ups. Our electrician will happily fit one as he connects the studio to your house electrically if you think you may occasionally have guests stay over in your garden room.
This is a summary of the current rules and regulations. However we would still always recommend consulting with your local planners first if you think your circumstance is unusual or falls outside of the parameters described here.

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