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Do I need planning permission to convert an existing outbuilding to create additional accommodation?

Planning permission is not normally required to convert an existing lawful outbuilding into additional living accommodation provided that: 

  • The additional accommodation would be incidental to the main use of the dwelling (i.e. home study, hobby room or playroom) and a separate or independent unit of accommodation is not created;
  • The works are internal, and no extensions are required to carry out the works.

If the proposed works would create additional accommodation which would be classed as ancillary to the main dwelling, such as annexe accommodation or an additional bedroom or living room then planning permission would be required for the proposed development.   As a general guide ancillary uses are those which are normally carried out within the main dwelling i.e. cooking facilities, sleeping accommodation or television/lounge room and incidental uses are those which are ‘parasitic’ on the main use of the dwelling – i.e. they cannot exist without it such as a games room, hobby room or swimming pool.

If you require further advice on whether planning permission is required for your proposed works the Council offers a pre-application advice service.