If you've decided to build your own home, then you need approval from your local council. You're likely to need the go-ahead on your plans before you apply for a planning permit.
If you've never done this before, then you might be worried about getting things right, especially in the initial planning stages. Before you put your application in, there are three conversations you can have that help the process go more smoothly.
Who do you need to talk to and why?
1. Your Local Planning Department
Local planners are useful sources of advice and tips before you put in a formal application for a permit. For a start, they can tell you what kinds of permits and permissions you need and at what stages. They can also explain how the process works and tell you what information you should collate in your submission.
You also get insights into any potential problems your application might contain. For example, if your plans include work that the council typically won't allow, then the planner can explain this to you. After this chat, you'll have a clearer idea of what you need to do.
2. Your Neighbours
Your neighbours can affect the decision you get on a planning permit. It's not necessarily enough to go by the book and follow planning rules; they could have objections that persuade the council to turn down your application.
So, it's worth chatting to your immediate neighbours about your plans and the work they will entail. Ask them what they think. If anyone raises concerns or objections, note them down.
At the end of this chat, you should know if your neighbours are on your side or not. If necessary, you can adapt your plans to reduce the likelihood that someone will raise an objection after you apply.
3. A Planning Specialist
Planning departments look at a lot of different factors before they make a decision on planning permits. This isn't just about your building; they also factor in other issues such as neighbourhood and environmental impacts, for example.
Even if you talk to a council planner, you may not learn everything you need to know. Consulting a company with experience planning issues helps. These consultants understand the planning process and how to meet its objectives. If you wish, they can also take on the application process for you.
To find out more about local planning issues and how they might affect your new home build, talk to consultants who specialise in planning permits.