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Do I need planning permission?

You do not always need planning permission when you are making changes to your home.

If your property is a ‘single family dwellinghouse’ (not a flat or maisonette) you can make a number of changes without planning permission. This is called permitted development.

Permitted development

On the Planning Portal you can find:

You can also see:

Permitted development rights do not apply if:

If you are not sure whether you will need to submit a planning application please contact us.

Changes of use

Uses of land and buildings are put into categories known as 'use classes'.

In many cases involving similar types of use, a change of use of a building or land does not need planning permission.

You do not need planning permission if either:

  • both the present and proposed uses fall within the same ‘class’ or

  • the Town and Country Planning (Use Classes) Order says that a change of use class is permitted to another specified class.

For example, a greengrocer’s shop could be changed to a shoe shop without permission as these uses fall within the same class, and a restaurant could be changed to a shop or a estate agency as the Use Class Order allows this type of change without planning permission.

Find out more about possible changes of use on the Planning Portal.

If you require confirmation of the lawful use of the land or premises, you can submit an application for a lawful development certificate.

Guidance on renewable energy

If you live in a single family dwellinghouse, the installation of these do not always require planning permission:

  • wind turbines

  • solar panels

  • ground source heat pump

  • air source heat pump.

Find out more about home energy generation on the Planning Portal.

Get more information about making your home more energy efficient on the Energy Saving Trust website.

What other consent may I need?

Building control

If you are making structural changes to an existing property or you are building a new property, you may need to apply for Building Control approval.


If you are making changes to the road or pavement outside your property, you may require consent.


Depending on the use of your premises, you may need to apply for a licence.

Get in touch

Planning Department