Richmond Council has criticized government plans for a relaxation of the rules around house extensions. The new proposals effectively double the size of extensions that can be built under Permitted Development Rights, the guidelines allowing homeowners to make changes to their homes without Planning Permission.
Cllr Samuel, Deputy Leader of Richmond Council, said: “We already have a planning system where some residents are unhappy when their neighbours install small extensions. These proposals will exasperate this situation, leaving neighbours powerless over large extensions that might blight their gardens, threaten their privacy and severely risk reducing the value of their homes.”
So what will these new rules mean in practice? We asked Stephen Green of Holland and Green Architects who has an outstanding reputation for home design and planning.
“As yet it is not clear what other changes in terms of height, width and the other Technical Guidance will be made. More consideration needs to be given to the ‘right to light’ of neighbours and the additional cost of generating this extra space.
“Whilst approvals may be more easily forthcoming, each additional metre adds considerable cost. With financing of projects still difficult to achieve, this relaxation of the rules is unlikely to generate a significant increase in the number of extensions being built.”
Stephen advises “The key to any additional building is careful planning. A moderate extension can add considerable internal space and a great WOW factor without encroaching to any great extent on the property’s garden - and without costing the earth. “
What are your concerns about the latest proposals? Add your thoughts below.
Thinking of having an extension built?
When the family is growing, and you’re desperate for extra room, a well planned extension or loft conversion is a great way to add space, functionality and value to your home.
Ideas and innovation
The smallest of extensions can make a huge difference. Look at the space you have and how it can be used effectively with the right design, materials and layout.
Picturing the end result should be something you feel truly excited and confident about. Using state of the art 3D technology, the like of which Holland and Green utilise, so you can visualize exactly how your home will be transformed.
Permitted Development Rights, even in Conservation Areas, often allow you to make substantial changes to your property without Planning Permission and this looks to be expanding further with new laws.
Invest with who you trust
You are about to invest in the most important asset you own, so it’s imperative that you trust the people you are dealing with. Too many people involved in the process can soon lead to delays, miscommunication and errors.
Given the go ahead
Holland and Green only recommend a list of approved builders we would trust to build our own homes! Or if you prefer, we can take charge of everything for you and manage the entire build process.
Member since: 12th October 2011
Stephen Green heads up Holland and Green, architects based in Richmond upon Thames. We offer a full complement of services to both residential and commercial clients in London, Surrey and points beyond.