Thinking of extending your house? 10 points to consider

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Many homeowners find that their existing house is too small especially with a growing family. Stamp duty land tax makes the cost of moving so great that many people consider staying put and extending their existing property instead.

Homeowners should consider the following points if they are considering extending their property:

    1. Is the property subject to any restrictive covenants where consent is required for any external changes to the property or where there is an absolute prohibition on extensions or external alterations? The property may be part of a building scheme where restrictive covenants apply. This should be investigated at the outset
    2. Is the property mortgaged? If so you will need to check with your lender as their consent will be required for extension works being undertaken at the property. This requirement for consent will have been included in the mortgage terms and conditions signed when the mortgage was taken out.
    3. Is the property a Listed Building, in a Conservation area or an area of Outstanding Natural Beauty and if so consent will be required being listed building consent or planning permission for extensions or other works in conservation areas or areas of outstanding natural beauty?
    4. Is the proposed extension one permitted under permitted development rights or is planning permission required? You should check the original planning permission for the property as sometimes permitted development rights are excluded on new developments. Even if planning permission is not required you may wish to obtain a lawful development certificate from the local authority to show the extension is lawful and meets permitted development requirements. If your local authority has introduced Community Infrastructure Levy Is the extension one that is exempt from any such levy.
    5. Is the property within 3 metres of a neighbouring property or will new foundations be excavated within 6 metres of another property? If so consent will be required under the Party Wall Act.
    6. Is the proposed extension one that would be over an existing right of way in favour of another property such as a rear access in a terrace?
    7. You need to consider insurance as you will require cover for the new works and the existing structure whilst the property is undergoing alteration or renovation as it is unlikely that your existing home insurance will cover this.
    8. Build over consent from the Water Company will be required if the proposed extension is over an existing public sewer and you should check that the soil conditions, surrounding trees and likelihood of flooding are all considered in the proposed works.
    9. Building regulation approval will be required in all cases either full plan submission or by way of a building notice.
    10. Permission is required for a new or replacement driveway unless the area uses permeable or porous surfacing and permission is required from the Local Authority for a new dropped kerb.

Contact our experienced property solicitors today

IBB’s team of property law experts are based in Chesham, Buckinghamshire and support clients from all neighbouring areas. We can advise on all aspects of buying, selling and mortgaging property. For more information or advice on buying or selling a property, lease extensions, landlord legal services or any other property matter, please call us today on 01494 790013 or 01494 790071 or email conveyancing@ibblaw.co.uk .