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Changes in the law means home owners can build bigger extensions without planning permission

The changes will cut out the red tape for many people, making extension building more stress free.

Extending a house can be a costly and time consuming task.

Usually you need to approach your council and get planning permission to build an extension if its bigger than the permitted development rules.

This can often take months and just submitting an application costs money.

But a change in the law means a lot of extensions, within a certain size, will now be able to go up without having to seek the  formal permission.

While this change is big – and gives home owners and developers a lot more freedom, it is not a green light to build whatever you like.

How big can it be?

Under the new rules, single storey extension limits have been doubled to up to 6m for terraced and semi-detached homes, and larger extensions up to 8m long for detached houses.

As well as good news for homeowners, under the new reforms shops will now be able to change office space without the need for a full planning application.

The move builds upon changes to the law which allow business owners to change the use of buildings from takeaways to new homes without undergoing a full planning application, according to the MEN.

To help deliver a greater mix of uses on the high street, the changes also allow the temporary change of use from high street uses such shops, offices, and betting shops to certain community uses such as a library or public hall.

Can I just go ahead?

The short answer to this is no.

You do still need to involve your local planning department.

Since 2014, over 100,000 homeowners have taken advantage of the temporary rules which have not only doubled, but don’t require planning permission from local authorities.

Instead of waiting months for approval, homeowners now notify their local council of the building work beforehand, who in turn then inform the neighbours to the property.

However if neighbours raise objections, the council then decides if the extension is likely to harm the character or enjoyment of the area.

Why has this change been imposed now

Kit Malthouse, the housing minister, says these changes have been made so people are not forced to move to bigger properties.

He said: “These measures will help families extend their properties without battling through time-consuming red tape. By making this permitted development right permanent, it will mean families can grow without being forced to move.

“This is part of a package of reforms to build more, better, faster and make the housing market work – and sits alongside our drive to deliver 300,000 homes a year by the mid 2020s.”

By Saffron Otter

Source: Kent Live

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More than 100 new houses approved in Notts despite concerns about access

Plans for 110 new houses in Wollaton have been approved despite concerns being raised about access.

Outline planning permission has been granted today and more detailed designs are expected to go before Nottingham City Council’s planning committee in the coming months.

No councillor voted against the plans, however there was one abstention from Councillor Linda Woodings, who represents the Basford ward for Labour.

Access to the new site will be via Woodyard Lane.

Planning officers believe it is wide enough for two cars to pass each other but there will be some places where one car is required to wait, as part of traffic calming measures.

Cllr Woodings said: “I do live very close to the bottom of Woodyard Lane, and when I saw these plans, to me it does look like an odd access route.

“You have a lot of roads coming together in what even now feels like quite a dangerous junction.

“You have to have the neck movements of an owl to check all the directions.”

Council officer James Ashton, from the council’s highways department, said a detailed assessment had been carried out on the junction where the new housing scheme will be accessed from.

It found there had been no accidents which involved an injury in the last five years.

Mr Ashton said: “We don’t think there will be a safety issue even with the additional build up of homes.”

The site currently consists of three empty ’employment buildings’ and used to be occupied by engineering firm Siemens for offices and manufacturing; these will be demolished to make way for the new houses.

The company relocated to a new site in the city in December 2017.

The planning application was made by Michael Davies on behalf of the Nottinghamshire County Council Pension Fund.

As a condition of permission being granted a ‘financial contribution towards education’ and £3,350 towards the improvement of the footpath link between the site and Lambourne Drive will be paid.

Source: Notts TV