Government To Relax Planning Laws – Home Extensions Chiswick

Government To Relax Planning Laws – Home Extensions Chiswick

David Cameron is to announce an emergency year-long free-for-all in house extensions, allowing homeowners to build up to eight metres into their gardens without council planning permission.

The coalition, currently facing the threat of two years of minimal growth likely to shred its spending and deficit reduction plans, is desperately casting around for shock measures to boost growth, and will on Thursday present a raft of proposals relaxing planning laws and the burdens on house builders.

Government To Relax Planning Laws - Home Extensions Chiswick

Government To Relax Planning Laws – Home Extensions Chiswick

The latest proposals will double the amount of space homeowners and businesses can build, but restrictions will still apply in conservation areas. The controversial idea to temporarily remove planning permission requirements is also expected to apply to lofts and garages and will be subject to a brief month-long consultation.
Cameron and his deputy, Nick Clegg, will complement their plans for a relaxation of planning laws with a temporary removal on the requirement for developers to include affordable social housing so long as the planned housing is for rent rather than sale.

The aim is to take advantage of the government’s historically low borrowing costs, but ensure the borrowing does not appear on the government balance sheet. Cameron will also announce new help for 16,500 first-time buyers, with an extension of the existing FirstBuy scheme, which offers an equity loan of up to 20% of the property value that can be used as a deposit.

Explaining the government’s temporary relaxation of planning laws, or permitted development rights, government sources said the aim was to remove unnecessary cost and time delays to people’s improvement plans.

Full planning permission is currently needed for any change to a home that extends more than three metres from the property’s rear wall in the case of a terraced property, with a requirement to fill in complicated applications that can take eight weeks or longer to be considered. During the relaxation of the rules, homeowners will be able to extend to six or eight metres beyond the property’s rear wall, depending on whether it is a terraced or detached property.

Businesses will be able to expand their shop by 100 sq m and industrial units by 200 sq m, and shops and offices will be permitted to develop up to the boundary of the premises.

Annually there are 400,000 planning applications processed, with almost 200,000 for residential improvements, many of which are forchanges such as conservatories or extensions.