Planning Permission for Outbuildings

(This information is a guideline only; Phoenix Timber Buildings are in no way responsible for decisions made on planning)

Rules governing outbuildings apply to sheds, greenhouses and garages as well as
other ancillary garden buildings such as swimming pools, ponds, sauna cabins,
kennels, enclosures (including tennis courts) and many other kinds of structure for a
purpose incidental to the enjoyment of the dwelling house.
Other rules relate to the installation of a satellite dish, the erection of a new dwelling
or the erection or provision of fuel storage tanks.
Outbuildings are considered to be permitted development, not needing planning
permission, subject to the following limits and conditions:

  • Outbuildings mini guide:
  •  No outbuilding on land forward of a wall forming the principal elevation.
     Outbuildings and garages to be single storey with maximum eaves height of 2.5
    metres and maximum overall height of four metres with a dual pitched roof or three
    metres for any other roof.
     Maximum height of 2.5 metres in the case of a building, enclosure or container
    within two metres of a boundary of the curtilage of the dwelling house.
     No verandas, balconies or raised platforms.
     No more than half the area of land around the “original house”* would be covered
    by additions or other buildings.
     In National Parks, the Broads, Areas of Outstanding Natural Beauty and World
    Heritage Sites the maximum area to be covered by buildings, enclosures, containers
    and pools more than 20 metres from house to be limited to 10 square metres.
     On designated land* buildings, enclosures, containers and pools at the side of
    properties will require planning permission.
     Within the curtilage of listed buildings, any outbuilding will require planning

    Building Regulations:

  • If you want to put up small-detached buildings such as a garden shed or summerhouse in your garden, building regulations will not normally apply if the floor area of the building is less than 15 square metres and contains NO sleeping accommodation.
  • If the floor area of the building is between 15 square metres and 30 square metres, you will not normally be required to apply for building regulations approval providing that the building contains NO sleeping accommodation and is either at least one metre from any boundary or it is constructed of substantially non-combustible materials.

General Information:

This section provides you with general information to help you comply with the
Building Regulations when constructing a new outbuilding within the boundaries of
an existing property, such as:
 garage or carport
 summerhouse or shed
 greenhouse
Building a new garage attached to an existing home would normally need building regulations approval.
Building a new attached carport (open on at least two sides) would not normally require building regulations approval if it is less than 30 square metres in floor area.

Building a detached garage of less than 30 square metres floor area would not normally need building regulations approval if:
 the floor area of the detached garage is less than 15 square metres.
 the floor area of the garage is between 15 square metres and 30 square metres, provided the garage is at least one metre from any boundary, or it is constructed from substantially non-combustible materials.

If you want to convert an integral or attached garage into habitable use, building regulations will normally apply.

In many cases, these structures will be exempt from requiring approval under the Building Regulations if they meet certain exemption criteria.

  • Permitted Development for householders – Technical Guidance

    You are strongly advised to read a technical guidance document produced by the Government to help understand how permitted development rules might apply to your circumstances.

    For more information please go to:


This is an introductory guide and is not a definitive source of legal information.

This guidance relates to the planning regime for England. Policy in Wales may differ. If in doubt, contact your Local
Planning Authority.


*The term “original house” means the house as it was first built or as it stood on 1 July 1948 (if it was built before that
date). Although you may not have built an extension to the house, a previous owner may have done so.

*Designated land includes national parks and the Broads, Areas of Outstanding Natural Beauty, conservation areas
and World Heritage Sites.