Applying For Building Control

If you are new to the process or would just like to update yourself on current procedure, the information below will  give you a short guide, and for any other queries do not hesitate to contact us directly.

There are two options when submitting an application for building works:

Full Plans

This is the most common type of application local authorities receive for building works. It requires detailed drawings to be submitted together with the relevant fee for the work being undertaken. The plans are checked and an approval notice is issued before work commences.
This process can take up to 8 weeks, dependant on the project, but in most cases it will be completed well before this.

Building Notice

This is a simpler procedure generally used for minor works, such as the removal of an internal load bearing wall, but cannot be used for commercial developments. A big advantage is that it allows work to start 48 hours after submission of the application as there is no plan checking involved before work begins.

For clarification on which application type would be suitable for your project and for information on the fees to be paid, please contact us.
There are also procedures that need to be followed and notifications given to the local authority before, during and on completion of the project.

What are the Exemptions?

A number of minor buildings are exempt from the Building Regulations, as listed below. Full details can be found in Schedule 2 of the Building Regulations and it is recommended that proposals for such buildings are run through a Building Control office:

Detached buildings not normally used by people; Agricultural buildings; Greenhouses; Buildings for the keeping of animals; Temporary buildings in place for less that 28 days; Construction site and sales offices; Small detached buildings less that 15m with no sleeping accommodation; Small single storey detached buildings less than 30m with no sleeping accommodation and that are more than one metre from boundary or constructed of non-combustible materials; Ground level extensions less than 30m floor area consisting of a conservatory, covered yard, covered way, porch or a carport open on at least two sides.

Applying the Regulations

Unless the work you propose is exempt, you must gain approval for your proposal from the relevant local authority. This can be done by making an application to the relevant local authority prior to the start of the work. Applications are in two forms: Full Plans & Building Notice.

Full Plans: This is the more generally applicable type of application. It requires that copies of all plans, specifications and calculations be submitted together with the appropriate application forms and fees. When satisfactory, the plans are approved and documentation is issued. Building work will be inspected by the local authority as it progresses.

Building Notice: Straightforward domestic schemes of work come under this application procedure. It only requires a limited range of fundamental information (excluding design plans), an application form and fee. While the Building Control Surveyor will anticipate potential problems and issue guidance, it is ultimately the responsibility of those carrying out the work to comply. Emphasis is laid on site supervision. To further help site assessment and verify compliance, plans and calculations may be called for such as structural or heatloss calculations.

Carrying out the work: Building Control Surveyors will inspect the work at statutory and crucial stages. Persons carrying out the work should liaise with the local authority to match the inspection regime with the contractor’s programme, and also give notice of commencement.

Completion: A final inspection will be made upon completion, so the local authority can issue a Completion Certificate indicating compliance and clearance

Next Step: Find out more about choosing the right builder