Building Control Approval Frequently Asked Questions

The Building Control approval process can also be quite complicated however below are some of the frequently asked questions.

In addition to building control approval your project may require you to go through planning approval process and Contour is here to help you.

What is Building Control Approval?

It is a legal requirement should you wish to construct a new home on a building plot or make significant modifications to your existing home. Building Control is a set of rules that specify the minimum acceptable level of safety for constructed buildings. Its purpose is to protect the public health, safety and general welfare to the occupancy of buildings. The rules can be quite complex and we at Contour Architectural services can help you out.

What happens if I do not obtain building control approval?

If you proceed and construct a building or make alterations to your home without approval you could be breaking the law and may be prosecuted and also enforced to remove or improve on what has been constructed.

Will I be able to sell my house after it has been altered without approval?

No, very unlikely as solicitors often look for all approvals relating to alterations during property searches and usually advise their clients not to proceed with the purchase until approval has been obtained.

Is approval required for loft conversions?

Yes. A roof space conversion is generally a structural alteration and you should seek professional advice.

Do I need approval to build a house extension?

Yes, extensions will involve structural alterations and you should seek professional advice.

Do I need approval to build a porch to the front of my house?

No, if the area of the porch does not exceed 3m2 and it protects an external access door to a house, however the glazing must comply with Part V of the regulations.

Do I need approval to build a garden or boundary wall including building a retaining wall?

No. The construction of all walls should be built with care and may require to be designed by a structural engineer.

Do I need approval to remove for example internal walls, a chimney breast or make internal structural alterations?

Yes, alterations of a structural nature will generally require the installation of steel supporting beams therefore approval is required.

Do I need approval to install a new WC facility?

Yes, you must indicate the location and how the WC is connected to the foul drainage system and how the toilet room is ventilated.

Do I need approval to install replacement windows?

No, however the work of replacement i.e. installation, draft proofing, damp proofing, ventilation etc must meet with the relevant requirements of the building regulations.

Do I need authorisation for a garage conversion into a room?

Yes, generally the authorities will at least require details of damp proofing, ventilation facilities, the means of escape, fire detection facility etc.

Do I need approval for a conservatory or a porch?

No, providing it is an extension to a building at ground floor level, and has a floor area not exceeding 30m2. Conservatories must have at least 75% of the roof and 50% of the external walls constructed of translucent material. Glazing must conform to with Part V of the regulations and all heating must have control mechanisms installed.

Do I need approval to carry out repairs to my house?

No, providing the repairs are of a minor nature and you are replacing like for like. Structural alterations require approval prior to commencement.

Do I need authorisation to insert cavity wall insulation into an existing wall?

Yes, you should confirm the type of insulation to be used.

Do I need approval for building a garage?

Yes, however a carport that is open on at least two sides, or a covered drive way or similar structure at ground level is exempt, provided it does not exceed 30m2 in area.

Do I need approval for building a garage?

No, provided it does not exceed 30m2 in area and provided it is not less than one metre from a dwelling or boundary of the site and that it is constructed of non-combustible materials.

Do I need approval to install a heating appliance?

Yes, unless it is the replacement of an existing appliance where no structural alterations will be carried out.

Do I need approval to install a new roof window?

Yes, because you are cutting out sections of a structural element i.e. the roof members.