Building Regulations

Fees are charged for Building Regulation approval, but expert advice is available free. We positively encourage enquiries before building regulation applications are made so we can help you to receive approval quickly. We aim to deal with all applications within the statutory time of five weeks, or eight weeks by agreement.

What are Building Regulations?

Building Regulations set performance standards in the design and construction of buildings ensuring the health and safety of people in and around those buildings. They also incorporate measures to conserve fuel and power, and ensure the provision of facilities for disabled people.

When is notification required?

  • Notification needs to be given when you intend to:
  • Erect a building e.g. new dwelling
  • Extend an existing building e.g. kitchen extension
  • Make structural alterations to a building e.g. remove a load bearing wall
  • Convert a loft e.g. make a new bedroom in the roof space
  • Install services and fittings e.g. install central heating
  • Change of use of a building e.g. convert a house to flats
  • Erect a large conservatory e.g. floor area greater than 30m²
  • Recovering a roof

Notification is required before any relevant work commences on site.

Who gives the notification?

You may submit the application yourself or you may engage someone to do it for you. If an agent is employed all correspondence will be directed to him or her.

How is notification given?

There are two ways of giving notice of the proposed work:-

  • Submitting full plans, or
  • Giving a building notice

The following notes explain the main differences in the two methods.

Full plans method

  • Detailed plans of the project, location and site are required. The specification of the materials that will be used is also needed.
  • In certain circumstances, e.g. when using steel beams to support floors, structural calculations will be required.
  • The plans will be checked to ensure the proposal complies with the Building Regulations. If it does not then you will be contacted about amending the plans.
  • When the application complies with the Building Regulations you will be sent an Approval Notice.
  • You can start work after you have given 48 hours notice, but remember until your plans are approved there is a risk that you may have to redo some of the work.
  • The work on site will be inspected at various stages. But the builder will know that if he follows the approved plans the work will comply with the Building Regulations.

Building notice method

A location/site plan is required but more details can be requested if needed. You must provide them by the date given.

  • Structural calculations can be required.
  • A detailed check of the proposals is not carried out.
  • You will be sent a letter stating your Building Notice has been accepted.
  • As with full plans, work can start after 48 hours notice has been given.
  • The work will be inspected as with the full plans method. But your builder has no approved plan to work to. If any work does not comply with the Building Regulations it will be necessary to change it or even take it down.
  • Building Notices are well suited to simple jobs such as installing a new bathroom or central heating system. They should be used with care for more complex projects.

Is a fee payable?

The total fees are the same for each method. With full plans, part of the fee is paid when the plans are deposited. For the remainder the applicant is invoiced after the first inspection. With a building notice, the whole fee is paid when the building notice is given.