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Why stop at a loft extension – when you can add two extra floors?

Depositphotos 72084155 m-2015 (1)

Under radical new amendments to current planning laws, property owners may be able to add two extra storeys to their homes without the need for planning permission – without even close neighbours having any formal right to object.

Revealing the proposals in a story on the 30th of September, the Daily Mail reminded readers that the relaxed rules would bring two-storey extensions into line with the current freedom to build a loft conversion or extension on a detached dwelling. These are formally known as “permitted development rights”.

In the first instance, those rights will be extended towards the owners of purpose-built blocks of flats, but the intention is soon to roll them out also to owners of detached homes. Although any such works still need to comply with building regulations, neighbours and others have no recourse to formal objection.

The radical proposals, designed to breathe new life into “outdated and bureaucratic” planning legislation, were the initial brainchild of then Housing Minister and now Chancellor of the Exchequer Sajid Javid. The banner has now been taken up by his successor Robert Jenrick.

Jenrick claims that the proposals will both allow homeowners the freedom to extend their homes – without the expense and inconvenience of moving to a new house – while at the same time helping to support small builders with new business.

The proposals are not without their critics, of course, with some already expressing their fears that such a radical relaxation of the rules will encourage unsightly and inappropriate development in residential areas.

In May we reported on new legislation allowing homeowners in England to build bigger extensions without planning permission.