Planning Permission -Overview

Throughout this website we have indicated where you may need to seek planning or listed building consent before carrying out energy performance improvements to your home. There are some improvements which obviously do not need permission – such as changing your light bulbs and upgrading your appliances – and a few for which every household must seek planning permission, such as installing exterior wall insulation. For much of what lies in between, the answer is usually: it depends. Above all, it depends on whether your home is listed or not (see separate page on listed buildings). If it is, any change which has an impact on the character of the building will require listed building consent. If it is not, you will be able to do a great deal without the need to seek planning permission.

Even if planning permission is not required, you may need to get changes approved by the Council’s building control department to ensure that your proposed works meet building regulations. However this may not be necessary if you use a contractor who is registered to do the work to the appropriate standard. The actual process of getting planning or listed building consent is relatively similar, just with different issues being considered. Planning permission considers the impact of external changes you want to make on the public realm and on surrounding property owners, whereas listed building consent also looks at changes you’d like to make inside the building, and their impact on its historic significance.

Getting Permission is a step by step guide to seeking consent from the Council.