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Frequently Asked Questions

Questions that are frequently asked about building regulations applications. Do I need an approval to . . . . .

If in any doubt after reading the following please call us in Building Control using the contact details on the left

Build a detached garage

Yes, approval is required. But a single storey garage at ground level, less than 30m² in floor area and with no sleeping accommodation, is exempt provided either:

Build a garage extension to my house

Yes, approval is required. However, a car port extension built at ground level, open on at least two sides and less than 30m² in floor area, is exempt.

Build an extension to my house

Building Regulation approval is required for all extensions apart from a porch or conservatory built at ground level and less than 30m² in floor area. These are exempt provided that the glazing complies with the safety glazing requirements of the Building Regulations (Part N) and they are separated from the rest of the house by external quality doors (Part L).

Note: to be classed as a conservatory, the structure must

Additionally, it is advisable to ensure that a conservatory or porch is not constructed so that it restricts ladder access to windows serving a first floor room, particularly if that window is needed as an emergency means of escape in the case of fire. Care should also be taken to ensure that flues are not covered over or prevented from functioning correctly.

Convert a garage to an extra room in the house?

Yes, approval is required as the works constitutes building work under Regulation 3 of the Building Regulations 2010.

Build or alter a garden wall or boundary wall

No approval is required. But, of course, you should make sure that the work is done safely to avoid accidents. For structural guidance on building a garden wall see the Garden Wall link.

Conversion of house into flats

Yes, approval is required as the works constitute a Material Change of Use under Regulation 5 of the Building Regulations 2010, even where construction work is not intended.

Conversion of house into shop

Yes, approval is required as the works constitute a Material Change of Use under Regulation 5 of the Building Regulations 2010, even where construction work is not intended.

Conversion of two or more dwellings into one

Yes, approval is required as the works constitute a Material Change of Use under Regulation 5 of the Building Regulations 2010, even where construction work is not intended.

Erection of shed

No approval required, subject to it being less than 15m² in floor area and not containing sleeping accommodation. However, any fixed electrical installation must meet the requirements of Part P (Electrical safety).

Insert cavity wall insulation

No approval required, subject to the installer being a member of a relevant authorised competent person self-certification scheme, and at completion the work is notified to the Council.

Carry out roofing work

Yes, approval is required if a roof is being recovered with a material substantially heavier or lighter than the original covering. For example, if a pitched roof was originally covered in natural slate and is being re-covered in either, concrete tiles or artificial slate then approval is required.

Renewal of a flat roof covering would require approval; however a repair by the addition of a layer without removal of the existing layers would not require approval.

Note: Where approval is required, the roof should be thermally upgraded as stated in paragraph 5.12 of Approved Document L1B.

The renewal of fixings and flashings, or localised repairs would not require approval.

Install fittings and appliances

Install or alter the position of a WC, bath, etc?

Yes, approval is required if the work involves new, or an extension to existing underground or shared drainage/ plumbing. However, if the work is noted in column 1, schedule 3 of the Building Regulations 2010, and is carried out by an installer of a member of a relevant authorised competent person self-certification scheme, and at completion the work is notified to the Council, formal approval is not required.

Install or alter the position of a heating appliance?

a. Gas: Yes, unless the work is carried out by member of a relevant authorised competent person self-certification scheme, and at completion the work is notified to the Council.

b. Solid fuel: Yes, unless the work is carried out by member of a relevant authorised competent person self-certification scheme, and at completion the work is notified to the Council.

c. Oil: Yes, unless the work is carried out by member of a relevant authorised competent person self-certification scheme, and at completion the work is notified to the Council.

d. Electric: Yes, unless the work is carried out by member of a relevant authorised competent person self-certification scheme, and at completion the work is notified to the Council.

Alter in any way the construction of fireplaces, hearths or flues?

Yes, unless the work is carried out by member of a relevant authorised competent person self-certification scheme, and at completion the work is notified to the Council.

Install hot water storage?

Yes, unless the work is carried out by member of a relevant authorised competent person self-certification scheme, and at completion the work is notified to the Council.

Install or replace electric wiring?

Yes, unless the work is carried out by member of a relevant authorised competent person self-certification scheme, and at completion the work is notified to the Council.

Install a gas or oil tank?

Gas tank:

Yes, unless the work is carried out by member of a relevant authorised competent person self-certification scheme, and at completion the work is notified to the Council.

Oil tank:

Yes, unless the work is carried out by member of a relevant authorised competent person self-certification scheme, and at completion the work is notified to the Council.

Internal alterations

Yes, approval is required if the alterations are to the structure such as the removal or part removal of a load bearing wall, joist, beam or chimney breast, or would affect fire precautions of a structural nature either inside or outside your house. You also need approval if, in altering a house, work is necessary to the drainage system or to maintain the means of escape in case of fire.

Loft conversion

Yes, approval is required. The conversion of adding another storey to a dwelling by the carrying out of a loft conversion may impose major requirements in respect of fire resistance and means of escape. If you are considering carrying out a loft conversion, it is recommended that you contact the Building Control office at an early stage for guidance.

Replacement of doors and windows

Yes, unless the work is carried out by member of a relevant authorised competent person self-certification scheme, and at completion the work is notified to the Council.