For clients undertaking loft conversions using permitted development rights

Option 1

For projects using Permitted Development Rights

Most loft conversions are carried out using Permitted Development Rights (commonly known as PD Rights). These rights are a type of "blanket" planning consent which are particularly useful for designing loft conversions - especially where the project is a "typical" loft conversion being carried out on a "typical" house (although not flats). If that sounds like your project then PD Rights will probably be sufficient to let you carry out the loft conversion without having to gain planning permission from the local planning authority. However, it is very important to be sure that Permitted Development Rights are available to use and to understand the conditions attached to them before undertaking any works. There are many instances where PD Rights are restricted, or removed entirely, in regard to certain buildings or even whole areas so they are not always the solution. Please speak to us about your particular circumstances, we will be happy to help. If you want to develop a loft conversion project using Permitted Development Rights this is how our service will work for you: 

Step 1 - Survey

One of our team will visit your property to carry out a measured survey and take photographs. He/ she will need access to the loft, to every room of the house and to the outside spaces. The survey will take a few hours to perform depending on the size and complexity of the building.

Step 2 - Preparation of  Planning Issue Drawings

Following the survey Planning Issue Drawings will be prepared for you showing the building as it exists now and as it is proposed to be after the building works have taken place. After you have reviewed these drawings you may want them to be revised, perhaps several times over, in order to refine the proposal to your needs. We will make these revisions until we reach the point where you are fully satisfied and ready to approve these Planning Issue Drawings for onward use.   

Step 3 - Apply for a Lawful Development Certificate

Once you have approved the Planning Issue Drawings our strong advice is that that you should permit us to make an application on your behalf to the local planning authority for a document called a "Lawful Development Certificate". The purpose of applying for a Lawful Development Certificate (especially at this point) is that it will provide you with evidence the proposed works are covered by PD Rights and is therefore lawful. Just to be clear, applying for a Lawful Development Certificate is not the same process as applying for Planning Permission. An application for a Lawful Development Certificate simply seeks to ascertain whether or not the planning authority agrees that the development is lawful rather than asking for its consent. The application process usually takes 8 weeks and you will have to pay the council a fee directly for it which is currently £128. If you wish to skip this step you can but if the project is later found to be unlawful the consequences are potentially very serious and could ultimately mean having to restore the building to its original condition. We therefore advise all clients seeking to carry out work using PD Rights to obtain a Lawful Development Certificate before starting work on site.

 

Step 4 - Preparation of the final Project Documents 

A set of final Project Documents will be prepared for you which consist of the Building Control Drawings, the Structural Calculations and a written Project Specification. These documents will be used both by Building Control to assess the project's compliance with the building regulations and by your contractors who will also use them on site during the build. We will send you these documents both by email in PDF format and in hard copy by post.  

Step 5 - Submission to Building Control 

The final stage of our process is an optional one in that it is a step which must be carried out by someone but sometimes that someone is not us. The Building Control Drawings and Structural Calculations need to be submitted to Building Control before works on site can begin. We can complete and submit the relevant paperwork for for or perhaps you or your contractor would prefer to do it instead. We don't mind either way. However, it must be understood that you will be required to pay Building Control their fees directly.

Our fees to deliver the service described above are as follows:

 

GETTING STARTED

Choosing the service to suit your project

Ready to get started on your loft conversion project? It's much easier than you might think. Loft conversions are either permitted development or they require planning permission and your first step in planning the project is to establish which of these planning routes suits your project best. You can read up on the subject here or you can speak to one of our consultants by calling us on 01732 792 027. Either way we have a service to suit you:

Option 2

For projects which require an application for Planning Permission

If you need to apply for planning permission for your proposed loft conversion you should be aware that there is a certain amount of inherent risk involved in doing this. Although we are highly experienced in this area, and have a good rate of success, the simple truth is that the outcome of any application for Planning Permission can never be guaranteed, as that would simply defy the nature of the process. Refusals are possible and the likelihood of that outcome occurring significantly increases if you are unwilling or unable to work within the planning authority's published design guidance. If your project requires Planning Permission we will deliver our service in a phased way which helps to limit unnecessary costs being incurred before Planning Permission has been secured. The service will be as follows: 

Step 1 - Survey

One of our team will visit your property to carry out a measured survey and take photographs. He/ she will need access to the loft, to every room of the house/ flat and to the outside spaces. The survey will take a few hours to perform depending on the size and complexity of the building.

Step 2 - Preparation of  Planning Issue Drawings

Following the survey Planning Issue Drawings will be prepared for you showing the building as it exists now and as it is proposed to be after the building works have taken place. After you have reviewed these drawings you may want them to be revised, perhaps several times over, in order to refine the proposal to your needs. We will make these revisions until we reach the point where you are fully satisfied and ready to approve these Planning Issue Drawings for onward use. Please note that we do not put forward multiple "options" or proposals unless you are willing to pay an additional fee for us to do so.

Step 3 - Apply for a Planning Permission

Once you have approved the Planning Issue Drawings we will submit an application for Planning Permission on your behalf to the local planning authority. The application process usually takes 8-12 weeks and you will have to pay the council a fee directly for it which is currently £230. If the local authority requires a design and access statement, location plan or block plan to be supplied with the application those will be included in our service. However, if the local planning authority requires some other specialist report or statement to support the application (for example if there is a risk that bats may be roosting in the loft they may ask for an ecological appraisal) then those reports/ statements are not included in our fees and you will have to employ other specialists to provide them.  

Beyond Step 3....  

The route beyond the submission of the planning application very much depends on the outcome of the application and the detail of the decision made by the planning authority. If the application is a success, and assuming you want to proceed further, then the final steps will be very much like steps 4-5 of a permitted development project (see above) where we produce the Building Control Drawings, Structural Calculations and Project Specification you will need to take the project forward. If the application is refused you will have other choices to make. We could make changes to the proposal and submit an additional application, you may choose to undertake an appeal or perhaps you may even want to give up on the project entirely. Whatever the outcome we will offer you our very best advice whilst fully respecting that it is your project and the final choices are of course yours to make.

 

Our fees to deliver the service described above are as follows:

FULL PRICE LIST

If you require additional services to those listed above you may find it in our full price list which is available to download as a pdf here:

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