NEW homes will get “automatic” planning permission approval to help speed up the building of properties, the housing secretary has announced today.
Robert Jenrick is proposing to bring forward reforms to the current planning system to get Britain building.
It comes after Prime Minister Boris Johnson vowed to “build, build, build” as part of a £5billion pledge to kick-start the economy and protect jobs following the coronavirus pandemic.
Under the current rules, it takes an average of five years for a "standard housing development" to go through the planning system, according to Mr Jenrick.
But the reforms will mean land designated for new homes, hospitals, schools, shops and offices will get automatic permission for firms to start building.
These types of properties will fall under the "for growth" category, meaning work will be able to start on the land straight away.
How do you apply for planning permission?
IF you're thinking of taking on a building project, you can apply for planning permission online.
You’ll probably need planning permission if you want to:
- Build something new
- Make a major change to your building, eg building an extension
- Change the use of your building
You can use a template letter on the Planning Portal website to submit a planning application.
Planning permission for changes to a single property, such as wanting to build an extension, currently cost around £206 in England.
To build a new home, planning permission starts at £462 per 0.1 hectare.
If the site is more than 2.5 hectares, it’s £11,432 plus £138 per 0.1 hectare up to a maximum of £150,000.
This goes up to £22,859 for a block of new-builds containing 50 homes, plus £138 for every additional residency.
Not sure if you need planning permission? Contact your local planning authority (LPA) before submitting your request.
Land can also be placed into two other sections, including "for renewal", where further planning checks will need to be carried out, or "for protection", which covers Green Belt, Areas of Outstanding Natural Beauty and other heritage sites.
Properties will still have to meet building regulations and health and safety standards.
The government has already announced that families will be able to add two storeys to a home without getting full planning permission from September.
Planning laws currently prevent homeowners from extending houses above a certain height, depending on the size and type of property.
Mr Jenrick announced the new proposals for the planning permission shake-up in a comment piece in for the Sunday Telegraph.
The Ministry of Housing, Communities and Local Government (MHCLG) will now launch a consultation process before setting out a timeline for the changes.
He said: "The Prime Minister has been clear that we need an ambitious response that matches the scale of the challenge in front of us.
"A once in a generation reform that lays the foundations for a better future.
"So this week I am bringing forward radical and necessary reforms to our planning system to get Britain building and drive our economic recovery."
Things you can do without planning permission
HERE are a few other things you can do to your home without getting planning permission.
All of them are subject to a few restrictions and building regulations. You can find the full list on the Planning Portal.
- Add single storey extensions of up to 4m by 6m,
- Moving windows and doors, as long as you're not looking directly into neighbouring properties,
- Move interioir walls, as long as the total footprint of the house stays the same,
- Loft conversions of up to 50 cubic metres for detached and semi-detached properties, or 40 cubic metres for terraced houses
- Single-storey conservatories of up to 4m by 6m,
- Outbuildings that double up as office space
- A porch of up to 3m tall
- Garden decking as long as it's more than 30cm above ground,
- Swimming pool as long as it's no bigger than 50 per cent of the size of the garden.
However, James Jamieson, the chair of the Local Government Association, argued that more than a million homes are waiting to be built in England alone - despite being given planning permission.
He told the BBC: "Nine in 10 planning applications are approved by councils.
"Only last week the government's own independent report warned of the worse quality of homes not delivered through the planning system.
"We urge the government to heed these warnings and not further sideline the planning process."
In his comment piece, Mr Jenrick insisted: "We are cutting red tape, but not standards."
The new rules will apply to homes in England, as land in Scotland and Wales is handled by their respective governments.
We've asked the MHCLG if there will be a change in planning application fees, or in the overall process, and we'll update this article when we know more.
The Sun is also checking if the changes will apply to both single applications and large housing projects.
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Homeowners can add £62,000 to the value of their home by adding a loft conversion - and you can do it without getting planning permission.
Another thing you can do without permission is converting your garage into an extra room if you don't plan to make any changes to the exterior of the house.
If you're hoping to get onto the property ladder, we've rounded-up six homes under £50,000 where single first-time buyers only need a £2,500 deposit.