Planning Permission - How to make a successful Application.

Apr 6 19:50 2007 adrian Kinley Print This Article

Most people submit their application and hope for the best but with a little inside knowledge and an understanding of "the system" you can greatly improve your chances of getting your plans accepted.

If you haven't had your plans drawn yet:

Call in to the local planning department at your local town hall. Tell the planning staff what you plan to do and ask for their advice.

In many cases they will tell you what will and won't get passed in your area. Sometimes it's a none starter so why get plans drawn up and waste money? In other cases it may not be so clear cut. They may say "we don't usually have a problem with that in your area as long as the roof is flat" etc.

If they aren't sure whether it would pass or not,Guest Posting ask about making an outline application. You don't need to submit drawings with an outline application but you will have to submit a full application at a later date. At least you will know it will almost certainly pass before you go to the expense of having your drawings done.

Architects are not cheap and you only want to pay for one design. Having an idea of what will pass before you start will save both time and money.

If you already have your plans:

Call at your local planning department and tell them what you are hoping to do. If they think you need to apply for planning permission, ask them for an application form. They will advise how many copies of the form you will need to return and how much the application fee will be.

Ask if they anticipate any difficulties that could be overcome by amending your proposal.

Send the completed application forms to your council, together with the appropriate fee. A plan of the site and a copy of the drawings showing the work you propose to carry out must accompany each form.

What the council will do.

They will let you know your application has been received within a few days. Your application will be put on the Planning Register at the council offices so that any interested member of the public can inspect it.

They will also either erect a notice near the site or notify your neighbours and sometimes place it in the local paper.

Who decides?

The person dealing with your application at the planning department will draw up a report. This report then goes in front the planning committee (made up of elected councillors) who make a decision based on the department's recommendations. Sometimes the planning committee delegate a senior officer within the planning department to deal with the case due to a back log of applications.

Either way, it's the department that usually gets the final say so bare that in mind when you are dealing with them.

How do they decide?

They cannot reject it simply because someone or some people opposed your application so if you don't get on with the neighbours, all is not lost!

The issues they will consider are the impact of appearance. Will it add to the area or will it be an eyesore? Roads and traffic - Maybe parking is a problem on your road and you are building an extension on your driveway. Personal circumstances of the applicant - Maybe you've got 5 kids in a 3 bedroom house and you are building a 4th bedroom.

The effect of your development on the value of nearby properties should have no bearing on the decision.

How long will the council take?

The council should make a decision on your application within eight weeks. If it cannot meet that deadline, they should obtain your written consent to extend the period. You should of course give your consent - Remember, it's these guys who ultimately make the decision so you want to keep on their good side.

What can I do if planning permission is refused?

If the council refuses planning permission or imposes conditions, it must give reasons. If you are unhappy or doubtful about the reasons for refusal or the conditions imposed, talk to your planning department directly.

Ask them if changing your plans might make a difference. If your application has been refused, they might allow you to submit another application with modified plans free of charge within 12 months of the original decision.

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adrian Kinley
adrian Kinley

Adrian Kinley is the author of the e-book "Builder Secrets Exposed" and also chief editor of


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