Al1son

Planning enforcement notice advice

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Terraced property, several years ago an outbuilding was built so we could house the washing machine and fridge freezer. The outbuilding was constructed with wood and a clear polycarbonate roof

 

The outbuilding sits our my side of the fence line/boundary.

 

The neighbour who owns the house but rents it out at the time saw the outbuilding and never complained to us about it.

 

Fast forward to the present day, the tenants have left, the owner who lives in London has returned to redecorate the property to re-let it out and now this enforcement letter has landed on my doorstep

 

The letter states that planning permission was not sought and therefore i need to remove the unauthorised rear extension or submit a retro application

 

Would i really need to apply for planning permission for such a basic outbuilding?

 

is there a time limit regarding enforcement if the outbuilding has been there with no issues for a number of years?

 

 

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A picture and dimensions would show if it meeds the requirements of permitted development or not.  If it does not, rebuild it so it does.

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1 minute ago, ProDave said:

A picture and dimensions would show if it meeds the requirements of permitted development or not.  If it does not, rebuild it so it does.

 

Pic attached

Screenshot_20211024-212001.jpeg

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There is a 4 year time limit. If you can prove it was finished more than 4 years ago they cannot take enforcement action. If you have good evidence send them copies and in a covering letter state that if they take enforcement action it would be your intention to appeal on the grounds that the development was completed more than 4 years ago.

 

If its newer than 4 years old then check if planning permission is required. Unfortunately it's complicated to work out. There is a guide here.. 

 

https://www.gov.uk/government/publications/permitted-development-rights-for-householders-technical-guidance

 

It might need permission due to its height close to the boundary.

 

What's the floor area? If over 15sqm then you may also need Building Control Approval. It might not be possible to get that easily (flammability of walls).

 

Edited by Temp

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That looks too big to comply, in particular It looks to extend more than 3 metres.

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As for evidence try Google Street View or aerial photos. 

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7 minutes ago, Temp said:

There is a 4 year time limit. If you can prove it was finished more than 4 years ago they cannot take enforcement action. If you have good evidence send them copies and in a covering letter state that if they take enforcement action it would be your intention to appeal on the grounds that the development was completed more than 4 years ago.

 

If its newer than 4 years old then check if planning permission is required. Unfortunately it's complicated to work out. There is a guide here.. 

 

https://www.gov.uk/government/publications/permitted-development-rights-for-householders-technical-guidance

 

It might need permission due to its height close to the boundary.

 

What's the floor area? If over 15sqm then you may also need Building Control Approval. It might not be possible to get that easily (flammability of walls).

 

It was a diy build, so all the materials i would have purchased myself and didn't keep any receipts etc.I may have an invoice for the polycarbonate roof as this was purchased online. I may have a few pics but thats it. Would that suffice?

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2 minutes ago, ProDave said:

That looks too big to comply, in particular It looks to extend more than 3 metres.

 

It doesn't extend beyond the actual brick construction of the property

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1 minute ago, ProDave said:

That looks too big to comply, in particular It looks to extend more than 3 metres.

 

Good catch. Looks deeper than the 3m allowed under permitted development rules for a rear extension.

 

1 minute ago, Al1son said:

It was a diy build, so all the materials i would have purchased myself and didn't keep any receipts etc.I may have an invoice for the polycarbonate roof as this was purchased online. I may have a few pics but thats it. Would that suffice?

 

They Google Street View etc

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Did you DIY the electrics or use an electrician? Reciept from him? Bank statement showing payment?

Edited by Temp

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23 minutes ago, Al1son said:

 

Pic attached

Screenshot_20211024-212001.jpeg

When you said “an outbuilding to house a fridge freezer and washing machine” I thought something that would be 1200mm, 600mm deep and maybe 1800mm tall. That’s enormous by comparison.

  • Haha 1

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8 minutes ago, Temp said:

Did you DIY the electrics or use an electrician? Reciept from him? Bank statement showing payment?

 

It was just a simple plug connection to an indoor socket, drilled through into the outbuilding to supply power to the Fridge and washing machine

Edited by Al1son

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8 minutes ago, Adsibob said:

When you said “an outbuilding to house a fridge freezer and washing machine” I thought something that would be 1200mm, 600mm deep and maybe 1800mm tall. That’s enormous by comparison. 😂

 

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12 minutes ago, Temp said:

 

Good catch. Looks deeper than the 3m allowed under permitted development rules for a rear extension.

 

 

They Google Street View etc

 

The length if i recall correctly is approx 4.5mtrs but doesn't extend beyond the property

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4 minutes ago, Al1son said:

 

The length if i recall correctly is approx 4.5mtrs but doesn't extend beyond the property

But the maximum under PD is 3 metres, or 4 if a detached house.

 

If you can't prove it has been there long enough to avoid enforrcement, then reducing it to 3M deep might be a solution.

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3 minutes ago, Al1son said:

 

The length if i recall correctly is approx 4.5mtrs but doesn't extend beyond the property

Definitely not PD then. To be honest, I think any planning application would fail. It doesn’t even try to blend in with the surrounding buildings, and it’s not really “exceptional design” to the extent that it would be excepted from that general rule.

 If you want to or keep it, you better find that polycarbonate receipt.

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5 minutes ago, ProDave said:

But the maximum under PD is 3 metres, or 4 if a detached house.

 

If you can't prove it has been there long enough to avoid enforrcement, then reducing it to 3M deep might be a solution.

 

Found an invoice from September 2015 where i purchased the polycarbonate roof, and a few other items related to the roof will this be acceptable?

 

Given that its more that 3m will i still need to reduce the size given that it was over 4 years ago?

Edited by Al1son

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Certainly try that first to prove you built is more than 4 years ago and they may accept it is now too late to take any enforcement action.  DON'T change anything before a decision.They may say any such changes re start the 4 year clock ticking, so stick to your story that you built it in 2015 and it has not changed in any way since.

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18 minutes ago, ProDave said:

Certainly try that first to prove you built is more than 4 years ago and they may accept it is now too late to take any enforcement action.  DON'T change anything before a decision.They may say any such changes re start the 4 year clock ticking, so stick to your story that you built it in 2015 and it has not changed in any way since.

 

Minor improvements were carried out to the structure to prevent water ingress that was carried out last year but the main structure has not changed

 

Would it best to call the council or email them? What would be the best approach? anything else i should do?

Edited by Al1son

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The LPA don't know when it was constructed and so have little or no evidence to the contrary it was less than 4 years ago.

You can try to flush this out of them.

Whereas you have a receipt for polycarbonate and you and any other person who was aware and saw the build over 4 years ago can swear statutary declarations to say when itwas constructed, you may be home and dry, "on the balance of probabilities", which is the test that applies with the onus of proof on the applicant, ie you

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33 minutes ago, Al1son said:

 

The length if i recall correctly is approx 4.5mtrs but doesn't extend beyond the property

 

Unfortunately it's not measured like you think on L shape houses. See diagram on page 19..

 

https://www.gov.uk/government/publications/permitted-development-rights-for-householders-technical-guidance

 

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30 minutes ago, Al1son said:

 

Found an invoice from September 2015 where i purchased the polycarbonate roof, and a few other items related to the roof will this be acceptable?

 

Given that its more that 3m will i still need to reduce the size given that it was over 4 years ago?

 

All evidence helps but you can't be sure it will be enough. Find as much as you can. Letters from other neighbours or family confirming when it was built would also help. 

 

If they accept that it's more than 4 years old you won't have to change the size. 

 

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24 minutes ago, Al1son said:

Would it best to call the council or email them? What would be the best approach? anything else i should do?

 

See..

 

1 hour ago, Temp said:

If you have good evidence send them copies and in a covering letter state that if they take enforcement action it would be your intention to appeal on the grounds that the development was completed more than 4 years ago.

 

 

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3 minutes ago, Temp said:

 

All evidence helps but you can't be sure it will be enough. Find as much as you can. Letters from other neighbours or family confirming when it was built would also help. 

 

If they accept that it's more than 4 years old you won't have to change the size. 

 

 

Great, thanks, will drop an email to the council to make further enquiries in the meantime will speak to the neighbours and a couple of friends who can vouch for me that its been up since 2015 and provide a copy of the roof invoice

Edited by Al1son

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33 minutes ago, ProDave said:

Certainly try that first to prove you built is more than 4 years ago and they may accept it is now too late to take any enforcement action.  DON'T change anything before a decision.They may say any such changes re start the 4 year clock ticking, so stick to your story that you built it in 2015 and it has not changed in any way since.

+1

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