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5 House Extension Ideas You Can Build Without Planning Permission

Whether you want to build up, out, or in the garden, you can extend your home by taking advantage of the latest permitted development rights.

When extending your home, the prospect of navigating the planning process can be daunting enough to deter even experienced self builders.

However, the great news is that there are a number of extension projects that can be completed without applying for planning permission, saving you time, money and hassle, provided you stick to certain guidelines relating to size and appearance of your new addition.

Here we highlight the things you can do with no planning permission needed.

Side-return Extension

red brick terrace house back extension

Image: 

Create valuable extra living space by incorporating the redundant strip of land to the side of the house (often seen in period terraces).

It’s the ideal way to create a larger kitchen; by removing the original exterior wall you can create a space that stretches across the full width of the house to the adjoining boundary.

Rear Extension

a rear extension on a small terrace house with bi-fold doors to garden

Image: turner architects.co.uk

Recent changes to Permitted Development guidelines in England mean that in most areas (not on designated land) you can now add a single-storey rear extension up to eight metres from the original rear wall of a detached house (previously it was four metres), or six metres from all other houses, such as semi-detached or terraced properties (previously three metres).

This allows you far greater scope to create a large, open-plan space that connects to your garden.

Double-height Addition

a double height extension addition made into a large bathroom with a bath at the wide window

Image: Monica Jackiewicz / Fine House Studio  

Two-storey rear extensions are also possible (not on designated land), if it is at the rear of the dwelling and in addition must not exceed 3m in depth or be within 7cm of the back boundary.

A two storey extension will allow you to increase the size of your bathroom or add another room.

Loft Conversion

loft attic conversion ideas design

Image: 

To fall under the rights, an attic extension must not exceed 40 cubic metres for terraced houses or 50 cubic metres for detached and semi-detached houses.

This still provides plenty of scope for the creation of one or more dormers to make space for a large master bedroom and en suite, or even two smaller bedrooms and a bathroom.

Build a Garden Room

a garden room used as an extra room for a property with a large garden

Image: 

You can construct many different styles of outbuildings, which you could use as a separate garden office, a home gym or perhaps an additional living room.

Any new structure must be single storey and not exceed 50% of the land surrounding the original house – any existing sheds or outbuildings are also included within this total.

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