Do you need planning permission to build a garden room?
Explore garden room manufacturers' websites, and you will commonly see bold statements of PLANNING PERMISSION NOT REQUIRED. It is true that garden rooms can be built following the Permitted Development rules, but these rules only apply in some places.
Where you live and how you plan to use your garden room will dictate whether planning approval is required. This article looks at examples where you would need planning permission to build a garden room.
It is important to remember when building a garden room that checking if planning permission is required is your responsibility as the homeowner. Yes, the company you choose to work with will advise you, but it is your responsibility to ensure you comply.
Where you live will influence if you require planning permission to build a garden room
In many cases, you won't need planning permission to build a garden room as they fall under Permitted Development. However, if you live in a Listed Building, a National Park, a Site of Natural Beauty or a World Heritage site, Permitted Development rules don't apply, so you are going to need to apply for planning permission to build your garden room.
Building a garden room if you live in a flat
If you live in a flat or maisonette, Permitted Development doesn't apply, so you will always have to apply for planning permission to build a garden room.
Garden rooms taller than Permitted Development allows
If you wish to build a garden room that doesn't comply with the Permitted Development rules, for instance, if you want to create a 3m tall building for use as a home gym but still position it within 2m of the boundaries, you will need to apply for planning approval.
Using a garden room for work may mean you require planning permission
Many people use a garden room as a workplace. If it is just you working at a computer, you probably don't require planning approval. If, however, you are building something like a hair salon or beauty studio and will have a regular flow of visitors/clients, you are going to need to apply for planning permission, even if the building would otherwise comply with Permitted Development.
Don't fall foul of this rule if you are planning to run a business from your garden room. Over the years, we have known of several examples where even after a retrospective planning application was made, an enforcement notice has been issued, and the owners have had to remove their garden room. This obviously involves a lot of cost and hassle!
If you are planning to run a business from your garden room, you'd be advised to apply for pre-planning advice from your Local Authority.
Don't be put off if you do need to apply for planning approval
Don't be discouraged if you do need to apply for planning permission to build your garden room; it can be a straightforward process.
Some garden room companies will handle the application process for you as part of their overall service. Others will supply you with the drawings and specifications you require to submit the application yourself.
There are also planning consultants who specialise in garden room applications.
There are costs involved in applying for planning permission for a garden room, so you will want to factor them in when setting your budget for the project.