Commonly Ask Questions 

Here are a list of the common questions asked during the process of planning or building an extension that may be able to assist you in determining if you want to proceed with an extension. 
Do I need planning, I was told I didn't ? 
In more cases than not, yo you will require one form of planning application if yo you wish to alter or extend your property. When people tell you that you don`t need planning, they actually mean that you don`t need full planning. Other forms you may need are a Lawful Certificate or possibly retrospective planning. Its always best to ask an expert before assuming you don't need to anything. 
Loft conversions dont typically require full planning and can be done under lawful is some key restraints on volumn, materials and projection ar stuck to. For a full explaination....... Check here 
How long does the whole process take and when can I start building? 
A full planning application is eight weeks once received and acknowledged by the council. Always leave two weeks for the drawings and application to be put together and compiled. Therefore, a sensible period is 10 weeks. 
Lawfully applications take the same to prepare, however they is time it has to take to process and give a decision, this is normally down to the work load of the planners. Please allow three weeks. 
A Notification application takes two weeks to prepare and submit again, however there is contact with the adjoining neighbours who will be consulted about your application and be given 21 days to reply. Therefore please allow 5 weeks from start to finish. 
Can you speed the planning up for us? 
If you a planning application in and want to speed it up by chasing the planning department, you will only be doing more harm than good. The reason it takes 8 weeks is to allow neighbours to find out from the planners by form of a letter, then have chance to send in a recommendation, an objection or a letter of acknowledgement and no complaint. These all get compiled and the planner dealing with the case will then put together a report to the Head of the department stating whether it should be passed and on what grounds. The final say is with the head of planning. By chasing you could only antagonise the planners and by using DKM Consultants, they will act as your Agent and ask diplomatically. The best you will get is a decision in 7 weeks subject to their work load. 
Can I Make any Changes ? 
Planning is about allowing you to build to the footprint you have asked and to the external look you have put forward. Changes internally do not require going back to planning. External changes to a window position may not require amendments to planning, however, putting in a new window or changing of materials will require a Material or Non Material amendment to be submitted - cost £30.00 and will require drawings showing the changes. 
How much does this all cost? 
Applications at the planning department are fixed fees and can be found on their websites. These will be as follows:- 
£103.00 - Lawful application 
£206.00 - Planning application 
£465.00 - new build application 
Free - Notification of a larger extension ( £95.00 from Sept 1 2019) 
(for a full list or anything specific please review the fees at your local council planning website) 
For applications to be put together please look at OUR PRICES page at the top of the screen. These show the fees for DKM and do not include the planning fees above. 
I`ve built something and now I have Enforcement writing to me to tell me I could be fined, what do i do? 
If you have received a letter from the planning department telling you that you have built something with in the ground that has not been applied for, they will give you a period of 21 days to reply and will normally be expecting a planning application to follow. If you do not reply you will receive a letter telling you that if a planning application is not submitted with in another 21 days they have the right to prosecute.  
We have a high success rate on getting this type of application through planning since most of the instances are when genuine misunderstandings have occurred and these can be rectified easily. Please get in touch for further details as every case is so different. 
Do I need a Party Wall Notice, my neighbour has been written to by a Party Wall Surveyor, What do I do next? 
You may require a Party wall surveyor if you:- 
going to be carried out directly to an existing party wall or party structure 
New building at or astride the boundary line between properties. 
Excavation within 3 metres of a neighbouring building(s) or structure(s), depending on the depth of the hole or proposed foundations. 
What tends to happen is your neighbour will be written to by a shark who is fishing for work and be searching for planning applications recently submitted and will put the frighteners up and your neighbour could panic. Party Wall Surveyors aren't cheap. Therefore, when you use DKM Consultants we go through this in detail and explain with your neighbour the situation. There are forms on the Internet that can be filled in and save you money. 
Take a look here if you need it further explained:- 
Do I need building control ? 
If you are making any structural alterations to you home, then yes you do. If your work involves removing chimneys , load bearing walls, widening and opening or building over sewers. 
Fire doors and detection 
Fire safety is in the press alot at the moment. If you have a three storey structure, you require a mains detection fire system with heads at each level of the hall way and a Heat detector in garages and kitchens. Rooms off of other rooms will require an additional head also.  
Fire doors are required in three storey buildings, so town houses and houses with loft conversions, these are FD20 doors min, however most manufacturers make an FD30 door. (bungalows becoming 2 storey dwellings dont require them). Glass doors are not allowe off the fire escape staircase. Doors to garages require a 1 hour fire door with seals around the door. 
Q and A

Get in touch  

If we can help you in any way, and you feel you need to ask us anything, please go to the CONTACT page and please leave us a message. You will need to put your contact details in for us to return your question as easily as possible. We don't charge for this, only hope that you will be pleased with the service provided and would like us to do work for you when the time is right. 
Your local planning office will help you if you wish to go along to them, however the help they give you will be basic and may only be issuing you planing forms. 4 out of 5 times the forms they will hand over will be the wrong ones as they will not know the planning type you require.  
If you want specific advise then you will need to book a planner for an hour that will take a week to book and cost you between £85 and £130. No notes will be issued to you and they wont come to you, so go armed with pictures and sketches. 
Alternatively start with DKM Consultants, they will ask the right questions, look up the address and let you know if you will be able to apply and the odds on you getting what you want.  
07894 670237 
or email at 
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