Building regulations approval
If you are carrying out work, you must apply to us for building regulations approval. You may need planning permission for some works – please contact our Planning Service to check if you need this.
There are three ways to apply for building regulations approval:
This is for work on non-domestic properties and any work to dwellings; however for some small works to dwellings a building notice application may be better.
You must provide full construction drawings of your proposals along with a full plans application. The fee for a full plans application is paid in two parts. You must pay the plan fee when you make your application, and when the work starts you will be invoiced for the inspection fee.
We assess the plans and aim to deal with your application within 21 days (domestic properties) and 35 days for applications for other properties.
After assessing your application, we'll either approve it, reject it or ask you for more information.
Notice of approval
If we approve your application we will send you or your agent approval documents which include a ‘notice of approval’ and a stamped, approved copy of your drawings.
Often we cannot approve an application first time and will reject it. This may be because it does not contain enough information or detail, has design problems, or does not cover fire-safety issues correctly.
If we reject your application, we will send you, or your agent, a rejection notice. The notice will list the reasons for rejecting your application, and will give you details of the appeals procedure. Before we can approve your application, you will need to send us new drawings which correct these issues.
Full plans application forms and guidance notes
Building notices are most suitable for small works to existing dwellings, such as heating installations and structural alterations.
Building notices cannot be used for:
- building a new dwelling
- changing the use of a property (for example converting a dwelling into an office or a shop into a dwelling)
- conversion of a house into flats
- an extension where the floor area of the dwelling is increased by more than 10m², or
- an extension that creates a new storey greater than 3m² in floor area and requires access by stairs, for example a roof-space conversion.
You should fill in one copy of the application form and send it to us with the appropriate fee. You do not need to send us drawings, but we may ask you for more information if we need it. You must pay the full fee (plan and inspection fees) when you make the application.
We do not formally assess any information you provide, and so you will not receive a notice of approval. We give our approval following on-site assessment of the work during building.
Building notice application forms and guidance notes
When can I start work?
You can start work as soon as you have made a valid application. You must tell us when you are starting the work and request site inspections at various stages during your works.
If you have made a full plans application, getting approval before starting work will give you some protection against having to make costly amendments on-site.
When the work is finished, and we are satisfied with it, and all building regulation fees have bee paid, we will send you a completion certificate, confirming that the work is in line with the building regulations.
This application is used when you need building regulations approval for work that has already been carried out to a property, when you didn't apply to us for approval before the work was done.
We inspect the work to ensure it meets building regulations that were in use at the time it was carried out. If it does we'll issue a regularisation certificate. Regularisation is also known as ‘retrospective approval’.
The fee for a regularisation certificate is 20 per cent more than the fee would be today if you applied for approval for the work before it was started.