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Frequently Asked Questions

 

Do we need planning permission?

Obviously it depends on quite a few different factors, however this is something that is very easily established, by speaking with your local council planning department.

What are Building Regulations, and do I need them?

Berrylands Building Company are right up to date with all building control requirements, and a brief outline of your construction information would be enough for us to tell you if they are required.

I want to demolish a load bearing wall, is this possible, and what do I need to do?

You can demolish a load bearing wall. You will need a structural engineer’s calculation to put forward to building control for approval beforehand. Your architect will be able to help you here.

I have a drain outside where the new extension will be, what shall I do?

You may have to change your plans to suit the depth and location of the underground drain or sewer that you intend to connect to.

If you intend to build over or close to a public sewer, you will require written agreement from your Sewerage Undertaker, so you should consult the company at the earliest planning stage of your building work.

What is the difference between a ‘Building Notice’ and ‘Full Plan Application’?

Full Plan Application

This application is suitable for both domestic or commercial works and includes plans, specifications, and where necessary structural calculations.

The details are checked to make sure they comply with the regulations. Once the application is checked and found to be satisfactory it will be approved. If not a letter will be sent, usually within 10 to 15 days after receipt of the application, advising what amendments and or additional information are required to enable an approval to be issued. If no response is received or the revisions submitted are not satisfactory they may have no alternative than to reject the application.

Advantages

A Full Plans application can be used to get an accurate quote from builders.

The council must check your application and make a decision within statutory time limits.

Your builder works from approved plans so there is less chance of work having to be corrected during construction.

A Full Plans application may be necessary when borrowing money from a bank or building society to pay for the building work, as they usually ask to see an approval notice before they advance any funds.

An approval notice is issued which can then be passed onto any future purchaser of the premises.

Disadvantages

There may be a delay while your surveyor or architect, for which they will charge a fee, prepares plans. However, plans may already have been prepared for the planning application, where necessary, which may just require the addition of technical details and sectional drawings.

Building Notice

Building Notice applications should only be used for work which is not complex and by people experienced in construction. They can only be used for domestic and not commercial work.

A Building Notice application must be submitted at least 48 hours prior to work commencing. The notice will be checked and if found to be satisfactory a letter will be sent acknowledging the application. Applications for extensions over public sewers cannot be accepted, as plans are required by Southern Water, who own the sewers. A Full Plans application will be required in this instance.

Advantages

Only a site plan needs to be prepared but sometimes detailed plans and calculations are required to support the application.

The time taken to process and acknowledge your application is less than a Full Plans application.

Disadvantages

The fees for a Building Notice application are exactly the same as a Full Plans application, but you should note that the plan and inspection fee are paid on deposit of the application. These are nonrefundable.

A Building Notice will make it difficult for your builder to give an accurate quote for your work.

A Building Notice is not acceptable or appropriate for commercial buildings or complex projects.