The legislation around Planning Permission and Building Warrants is far reaching and has the possibility to have a significant impact on a project. This can range from an extension on a house to a large commercial building.

Therefore, when considering undertaking a building project, it is important to be aware of Planning Permission and Building Warrants. It is also important to consider whether Listed Building Consents and Conservation Area Consents will be necessary.

The difference between Planning Permission and Building Warrants

Both Planning Permission and Building Warrants need to be considered when undertaking a project, but they deal with different aspects of the process.

Building Warrants

When it comes to a building warrant, they are applicable for both adding to a building. E.g. an extension, but also removing parts of a building to enable an extension to be built or a room to be altered. The building warrant deals with the specifics of the project in terms of what is planned and how it will be done and it confirms that the design and building methods meet Scottish building regulations.

Planning Permission

Planning Permission relates to other aspects of the planning and building process.  For example, if it was an extension, the planning permission relates to where building the extension will be added to the house and its impact on neighbouring properties. However, planning permission can also be required where there is a change of use. This could be a house being converted into a café – with consideration having to be given to possible impacts in terms of parking of cars and increased traffic. This highlights that, whereas the building warrant deals with the standards of the building itself, the planning permission will consider the broader impact of the building and its use.

Additional Considerations

If the property is listed or situated in a conservation area there are likely to be additional conditions regarding both planning permission and building regulations.  These are likely to impact on the aesthetics of the building in question, and possibly stipulate building materials used to retain the building’s historical integrity or the look and feel of a neighbourhood. 

To find out more about how our conveyancing team can help with obtaining either of these types of permissions and other property matters please click here.

Author(s): Greg Center

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