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OK. I officially give up trying to apply for planning permission.

(51 Posts)
Tansie Wed 08-Aug-12 20:00:34

I am going to have to pay an architect to get our single integral grange conversion into a living room through planning. It will cost me £800. Trawling through the Planning Portal and the Local Council site has possibly taken a week of my time and I just can't do it.

I do not know what a 'planning statement' is, what it should state. I do not know why one is mandatory.

I do not know why I need a biodiversity statement.

I do not know why I need to state how many employees my garage conversion will employ and what its opening hours will be.......

I do not know why I have to make an Affordable Housing statement. For my garage conversion.

Now, having spend many, many hours on it, I can no longer find which subsection of which subsection tells me what scale the 15 odd maps and plans I have to supply have to be.

I am close to tears with pure frustration.

Tansie Wed 08-Aug-12 20:00:52

garage conversion.

lalalonglegs Wed 08-Aug-12 20:21:19

Does your LA planning dept hold sessions where you can come along for advice? Many do and planners may be able to answer your questions and tell you exactly what paperwork they need in order for you to make an application.

tricot39 Wed 08-Aug-12 21:17:20

That's planning.
Hideous!!
I am soooooo glad I am not an architect!
Doing 2 tiny applications for DH nearly sent me over the edge.
I entirely sympathise with you!

Do you need permission?? Planning portal suggests that not every case needs it??
www.planningportal.gov.uk/permission/commonprojects/garageconversion/

You might actually need to look more into Building Regs:
this

If nothing else, your spend on architect's fees might also sort out all the other regulatory hurdles (ie Blg Regs) so maybe it is not such a bad thing. Doing it yourself is possible but because you have to learn it all and go down false alleys it will take a massive about of time, effort and frustration. Unless you are totally broke the fees are probably worth the money.

good luck

maxmissie Wed 08-Aug-12 21:33:54

Hi, you should be able to do some, if not all of it yourself. The planning application forms are ridiculously long even for domestic proposals but you should be able to get the application forms for householder extensions/works from the Planning Portal. It sounds like you are trying to complete the forms for full planning permission which are for everything else other than householder stuff. Never tried to submit an application via the Portal though only deal with them at the other end!

If you can't get them from the Portal then you could get them from the Council's website or ring up their Development Control office and ask them to send them to you to complete by hand. The planning office should also be able to tell you what plans and documents you need to submit. They often have a Duty Officer system where you can go in and ask for advice.

You might need to buy some 1:1250/1:2500 location plans from the Council if you haven't got any such plans yourself. You might also need to do a block plan (1:200/1:500). You will then need existing and proposed floor plans and elevations (1:50 or 1:100). You might be able to draw these yourself but they will have to be to one of these scales. You shouldn't need lots of other supporting information but this varies from Council to Council. Where I work this would be all you need to submit, plus the forms and the fee which currently is £150, unless there were certain site specific constraints that require further info to be submitted, e.g. you might need to do a Design and Access Statement and/or Heritage Statement if you live in a Conservation Area and/or where you live is a listed building or is near to a listed building.

Other than that I would second tricot's advice - it can be complicated even for something that appears straightforward, especially drawing the plans to scale so it may be worth getting someone to do it for you. You should check about Building Regs and the Council may tell you whether you need planning permission or not, they sometimes have a procedure where you send them basic details of what you want to do and they will confirm it back in writing. I would definitely get this checked first if you haven't already as it could mean you only need Building Regs and you will have confirmation for if you sell your house that planning permission wasn't needed to convert the garage.

Don't get Building Regs and planning mixed up - they are separate legislation and you may need both, neither or one and not the other. Sorry if you already know this!

ILikeToMoveItMoveIt Wed 08-Aug-12 21:38:48

It really isn't that hard.

Call your local planning department and ask them what you need to do. They should be approachable and will be able to guide you on the way forward.

Seriously, you will be more than capable of sorting this out smile

fizzybeerandsausages Wed 08-Aug-12 21:51:08

Have you asked the planning department for confirmation that you need planning permission? Most garage conversions do not require planning permission, it is only if there is a condition on the original permission for the house which removes the ability to convert the garage without needing planning permission.

Tansie Wed 08-Aug-12 21:58:55

Thanks, all. I have calmed down a bit now!

Sadly yes, I do need PP for this! (removal of permitted development on my estate)

I am hoping the Planning Officer who I won't be able to access until between 11 and 1 on Tuesday at the earliest might help without hitting me the Help Fee!

Tansie Wed 08-Aug-12 22:00:28

Interestingly, nowhere on the council site or portal does it tell me that the conversion (it does include an internal wall) needs to be made of anything other than papier mache....

I'd've thought it would say THIS needs to conform to Part A, THIS to Part B etc. But I haven't found it!

Flosshilde Wed 08-Aug-12 22:03:02

First of all I agree with the others that you probably don't need planning permission for this, just Building Regs. Ring the planning department and find that out before you do anything else.

I have submitted applications on the Planning Portal for people (as a favour) and it is easy. You are looking at the requirements for a full planning application, which is much more complex. You need the householder forms. You won't need any supporting statements unless you live in a conservation area.

Flosshilde Wed 08-Aug-12 22:07:59

No it won't say that because the way it is constructed is Building Regulations, not planning. Planning need a floor plan, elevation and location plan. And the forms. You can do it yourself. Measure it, and 1cm on the page is 1m on the ground which equates to a scale of 1:100. All you need to know is what size of window you're putting in the front in place of the garage door.

wonkylegs Wed 08-Aug-12 22:28:44

Right - firstly you've got the wrong form
You need the householder consent form rather than general planning permission.
The fee should be £150
You will need a completed form
A Ordinance survey plan showing the boundary of your plot - you need to Mark this in red. And should be at a scale of 1:1250 - you can get these online - the planning portal links to a few companies who do this.
Then you need Existing plans (site & floor plans) and elevations drawn to scale (preferably 1:50 or 1:100) and with dimensions written clearly on them also mark which way is north.
You then need proposed plans and elevations. In same format as the existing ones.
To complete your form you will also need to sign probably form A to confirm you own all the land you wish to build on. If you don't (I.e someone else - freeholder has an interest) then you need to give them notice (there is a form for this) and the sign & fill in certificate B
If somebody else has an interest & you can't find them to serve notice you must fill in certificate C
You will also need to make a declaration regarding if it's agricultural land or not = certificate D.
Hope you are still with me here.
If you home is not listed or in a conservation area this is all you will need. If you are in a conservation area or your home is listed then you will need to provide additional information and possibly make an additional application - if this is the case I would get professional assistance.
If you have any questions or don't understand anything I've said let me know & I'll do my best to help
If you still want to talk to an architect and your in the NE let me know - we usually are free for initial consultation.

Flosshilde Wed 08-Aug-12 22:52:07

Wonky - Cert D isn't the agricultural holdings cert, it is where you know none of the owners of the land. Agr holding is a seperate certificate.

Anyway OP, wonky's advice is otherwise spot on and very clear. Follow it and you won't go wrong.

Tansie Thu 09-Aug-12 08:15:09

wonky- many thanks. I think what's been 'throwing' me is that on the planning portal, once I have filled in all the previous stuff (i.e. the form 'knows' what I'm trying to do by this stage as I've yes/no'ed all the answers to that point) the Mandatory (supporting) documents (in Full PP, mind as that's what the yes/no's of the 'I don't know what type of permission I need' question lead me to!) was requiring 'Planning Statements' and all sorts. I'd clicked on that expecting another y/n tick box exercise but instead I had 'scan your Planning Statement on here'.... and I went 'Wot?!'

I have now found that if I 'ignore' the outcome of the 'What type of permission do I need?' section and announce I know I need 'Householder PP', it does get rid of vast amounts of that gumph!

A question (please, as you've been so helpful!)-

How do I tell my immediate neighbour officially about my plans? What sort of time scale for an objection does he have? (he won't, incidentally!- but a new window will face the blank side of his house). At what point does the yellow note go on a nearby lamppost? Does the Council send this to me to put up or is it a downloadable template I fill in and put up?

The previous owners of our house got PP for an extension which was never carried out. I have used their official 'existing' PP plans (left with the deeds etc which we hold), and photoshopped out all the council 'received' stamps etc. Will these do? It's a location plan (at 1:1000) and a floor plan (1:50), done by an architect as it was to be a vast extension! They obvs got through Council first time!

Finally- ownership. I own the house as a joint tenant with DH- so in the Ownership section, can I say 'Yes, I own it' as the alternative is to list all the 'tenants' as opposed to state who you might joint-own with!

And yes, sadly I absolutely do need planning permission. I don't need to call the Council to ask. All permitted development rights have been removed from our estate.

TirednessKills Thu 09-Aug-12 08:41:52

Message withdrawn at poster's request.

wonkylegs Thu 09-Aug-12 10:08:20

You'll need a new OS plan as you can't copy these without a licence which I presume you won't have. But otherwise you should be fine with the plans.
If your neighbours have no financial or ownership interest in the planning permission area then you don't need to formally notify them. Although to make the process go smoother I usually advise clients to have a quiet word before they find out officially. The council will send out the official notice to your neighbours once your application is validated. You won't always get a notice on the lamppost for householder permission as it's up to the councils discretion as to whether they advertise minor applications publicly - they usually don't to save money. The notices you see up are usually for highways or major development.
I hope that answers your questions - I'm on my phone so can't see what you wrote. If you & dp apply together for the permission then you can fill in Form A and don't need to do anything else. If its just your name on the application then you need to officially inform dp with a certificate you can download off the portal. Its usually on the 1st page. And then you need to fill out dps details on cert B & sign that one. If that makes sense. Anything else let me know.

wonkylegs Thu 09-Aug-12 10:20:15

Re: Cert D - doing it off the top of my head , sorry if I got that one wrong - usually I'm looking at them when I fill them in. C& D relate to not knowing who owns the interest. Yes agricultural declaration is after that.
I must admit I'm more used to Major applications than householder ones - which is where all those complicated statements come in, which makes filling out the form bit relatively easy. wink
I think your neighbour will have 21 days if they wish to object. (i'm not sure if this changes with smaller apps but i don't think it does) Objections can only be for valid planning reasons not just because they feel like it or don't like what your proposing.
Hope that makes sense

GrendelsMum Thu 09-Aug-12 12:11:46

Have you got to do a Design and Access statement? If so, I found that it was actually much less difficult than it sounded.

I basically wrote a few sentences about why what I was going to build was appropriate to the setting - i.e. it was a rural area with a lot of a particular building material used, so I was going to use the same building material, and have something that was plain and functional, like an agricultural building, (i.e. rather than having twiddly ironwork which would have been the other option).

Presumably you're using bricks and windows to match the rest of the house, so I imagine you could say that in your Design statement.

wonkylegs Thu 09-Aug-12 13:57:54

You don't usually need a d&a for a householder application.

Flosshilde Thu 09-Aug-12 20:24:32

A Design and Access statement is only required for a householder application if the house is in a conservation area. I'd hazard a guess it's not a CA if it's an estate with all permitted development rights removed.

You can adapt the previous plans for an extension. Just make sure you get rid of all the references to the previous application i.e. number, approved stamps etc. You can even copy the location plan but make sure the red edge is transferred either by colour photocopying it or drawing it on again. Alternatively you can use the location plan from your deeds if it is to scale.

If you own the house jointly with your DH Cert A is fine.

GrendelsMum Thu 09-Aug-12 22:02:13

aha - we were conservation area so I had to provide one, plus a description of trees in the vicinity...

Tansie Fri 10-Aug-12 08:40:05

OK, for householder, I need, National requirements:
Completed form
A plan which identifies the land to which the application relates and showing the direction of North, drawn to a scale of 1:1250 or 1:2500 with the application site outlined in red
A copy of other plans and drawings or information necessary to describe the subject of the application including:
-Block plan of the site at a scale of 1:200 or 1:500 showing any site boundaries
-Existing and proposed elevations at a scale of 1:50 or 1:100
-Existing and proposed floor plans at a scale of 1:50 or 1:100
-Existing and proposed site sections and finished floor and site levels at same scale
-Roof plans at a scale of 1:50 or 1:100 ( why?! )
The completed Ownership Certificate (A, B, C or D)
Agricultural Holdings Certificate
Design and Access Statement ( we're not in a conservation area, though! )

Local requirements:
Biodiversity survey and report
Flood risk assessment
Parking provision
Tree Survey/Arboricultural implications (British Standard 5837:2012)

So this is pretty much as wonky has already said! They do appear to need D&A statement, though.

My LA is Test Valley in Hampshire, fyi.

Today I have to measure the maps and plans I have to check that they're of the correct scale (they say they are, but of course I don't know if they're resized photocopies!)

Just one more Q: Can DH and I actually apply together? I guess that'd be easier on paper than in the electronic tick boxes of the PP Portal!I will if I can remove the issue with he and I being joint owners.

GrendelsMum Fri 10-Aug-12 08:50:20

You seem to need an awful lot more than I did?

For parking provision, I put something like '2 off-road parking spaces on driveway' and for trees I ticked a box that said there were no trees affected.

I didn't have to do flood risk or a biodiversity survey. Do those not have to be done by qualified professionals?

Tansie Fri 10-Aug-12 15:17:03

TBF, I think for those I just need to write, like you did 'The two pre-existing off road parking spots will remain unaltered', and 'No trees will be affected by this change of use', and I can look at the flood map to declare we're not in a flood risk area and state as much. The biodiversity thing is a tick box exercise, so not difficult.

But there is rather a lot of 'stuff', however, considerably less than I originally thought...'How will you dispose of hazardous waste?' , 'What will the opening hours be?'etc!

GrendelsMum Fri 10-Aug-12 15:19:34

Well, come on Tansie? How will you dispose of hazardous waste?

Roof plans are potentially really easy, as they consist of two rectangles next to each other...

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