The planning application process

Check if you need planning permission

Before going ahead with any building work or alterations to your property you should check if you need planning permission.

Step one - check national rules

Start by looking at the national guidance for different projects on the Planning Portal.

This will give you an idea of what is permitted (called "permitted development rights") by national rules. Please note that flats and maisonettes don't have any permitted development rights, so if you plan to change the outside appearance of a flat you'll need planning permission.

Step two - check local rules

Once you've checked the national rules you'll need to check for any extra local constraints placed on your property.

Local constraints affect what is usually permitted without planning permission.

Check local constraints on your property

If any of the following apply then we recommend you get some professional advice about your project:

  • Your property is subject to an Article 4 direction
  • Your property is in an Area of Outstanding Natural Beauty or Conservation Area
  • You live in a listed building

Getting formal confirmation that you don't need planning permission

If you want formal confirmation that planning permission is not required for your project you can apply for a Lawful Development Certificate (LDC). This is a legal document confirming that you don't need planning permission.

Read more about Lawful Development Certificates