16. What is permitted development?

Permitted development allows you to perform certain types of work to existing buildings, and erect new buildings without needing to apply for planning permission. There are certain constraints relating to the size, location and appearance of buildings which must be considered for each specific site.

The permitted development rights come from general planning permissions granted by the Government rather than the local authority. These permitted development rights do not apply to flats, or similar buildings. Commercial and agricultural buildings have different permitted development rights to domestic dwellings and out-buildings.

You may have restricted permitted development rights depending on what kind of area you live in. These areas are called ‘designated areas’ and generally are areas such as:

  • Conservation areas
  • National parks
  • Areas of outstanding beauty or
  • World heritage sites