Do you need planning permission for a porch?

Do you need planning permission for a porch? The answer is that it depends on the type of porch you want to have added to your home. Let’s discuss some of the common factors used to determine if and when planning permission is required. We’ll also share a few tips for avoiding the bureaucracy whenever possible.


The Design of the Porch

If the exterior of the porch won’t cover more than three square meters, then in general, you don’t need planning permission. Anything larger typically will, because it counts as an extension of the home, not a porch. Note that these dimensions are based on the outside of the porch, not the interior section. If you live in a protected, listed building, then you will need to work with a porch company to submit a design that will be approved.

Know that the design of the porch can take many forms, and it should be considered in relation to everything else around it. For example, a porch added on to a sunroom or connecting to a gazebo may fall into the “extension” category.

This is why you want to think carefully before designing the porch and consider how much space you really need. Perhaps you only need a basic overhanging roof so that you and packages by the door don’t get wet in a storm. Consider how you’ll use the space and the features that really matter. A good porch company can provide a number of design options that meet your functional and aesthetic needs while remaining within acceptable parameters.

The Height of the Porch

A porch that’s no higher than three meters typically won’t require planning permission. That three-meter height includes the stairs, foundation, and roof of the porch. You may have to give up that steep pointed roof to get the porch done without going through a planning commission, but know that there are many styles you can choose from that still offer protection while you’re fumbling for your door key.

A porch of any height has to be approved if you live in a listed building. The porch will then have to match the architectural standards for that property or the community.

The Distance from Roads and Property Lines

Planning permission isn’t required if the porch is small enough and far enough from the roads and any property line. The porch needs to be at least two meters from the road and property lines. This means that small porches that run-up to the sidewalk or street probably requires planning permission. However, it may be worth it to go through the process, since porches provide increased security and curb appeal. They may even increase the value of your home if they are done right.

A possible solution to this is to change where you locate the porch, but then you have to consider how the rest of the property is used. For example, do you really want a porch on the back door if it is inconvenient to reach when you get out of the car or come in off the street? In general, the best choice is to redesign the porch to fit the front door or other door you use most often.


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