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Apply for planning permission

Apply for planning permission

Check if you need planning permission

You need planning permission for most building work, or if you want to change the use of a building or a piece of land.

However, you can carry out some work without the need to apply for planning permission. This is called 'permitted development'. The Planning Portal explains the types of work that you can do under permitted development.

Even if the work does fall under permitted development, you may still need planning permission, as permitted development may not apply to your property.

You can find out what permitted development rights your property has by:

  • checking your deeds
  • getting advice from your planning agent (if you have one)
  • checking with us

Get advice or confirmation

You can find advice on the Planning Portal, or apply for advice from us. You can also apply for a Lawful Development Certificate if you want us to confirm that your work does not need planning permission.

  • Planning Portal
    You can find general advice about if you need planning permission on the Planning Portal

  • Planning advice
    We offer a chargeable planning advice service, where a planning officer will review your proposed development and advise you if you need planning permission
  • Lawful Development Certificate
    You can apply for a Lawful Development Certificate [link to the entry in the validation checklist directory] for formal confirmation that your work does not need planning permission. This can apply to work you have already completed, as well as work you are going to carry out.
  • Larger home extensions
    If you want to extend your property larger than permitted development allows, you will need to apply for a type of prior approval known as the 'neighbour consultation scheme'.
  • Prior approvals
    You will need to get approval from us for some types of developments including
    • demolition of buildings or structures [link to prior approvals in validation checklist]
    • telecommunications [link to prior approvals in validation checklist]
    • agriculture [link to prior approvals in validation checklist]

Other things you need to consider

As well as planning permission, there are other things you need to consider. This includes permissions, regulations and restrictions that apply to where you live or what you want to do.

  • Building control
    Even if you don't need planning permission, you may still need building control approval. Building regulations make sure that buildings are safe, accessible and energy efficient.

  • Conservation areas and listed buildings
    If you live in a conservation area or your property is a listed building, you may need specific consent, as well as planning permission.
  • Work on a protected tree
    Before you carry out work on a tree, you need to check if it has a Tree Preservation Order (TPO) on it.
  • Dropped kerbs
    You need permission from Essex County Council if you want a dropped kerb. You may also need permission from us[link to directory entry].
  • Other associated permissions
    You may require additional permissions which relate to issues such as rights of way and party walls. You can find advice on other associated permissions on the Planning Portal